WYATT, BENJAMIN DEAN #
- Born: 1775 Died: 1855
Architect, of London, for whom see Howard Colvin, A Biographical dictionary of British architects 1600-1840 (4th edn, 20085), 1170-1173, and the Wyatt family tree in Derek Linstrum, Catalogue of the Drawings Collection of the Royal Institute of British Architects: the Wyatt family (1974). Benjamin Dean Wyatt, one of the extensive family of architects who were descended from John Wyatt (1675-1742) of Weeford, Staffordshire, was the eldest son of JAMES WYATT . It appears that he did not settle on architecture as a profession until he was in his mid-thirties. As a young man he worked for the East India Company in Calcutta, where he spent some time in the office of the Governor General, Richard, Earl (later Marquess) Wellesley. This connection led to to his appointment as secretary to Lord Wellesley's younger brother, the Hon. Arthur Wellesley, later first Duke of Wellington, when the latter was Chief Secretary in Ireland between 1807 and 1809.(1) In 1809 Wyatt returned to London and set up in practice as an architect. He continued to enjoy Arthur Wellesley's patronage, working for him both at Apsley House, London, in 1828-29 and and at Stratfield Saye in 1838-40; it seems likely that either he or his brother MATTHEW COTES WYATT was the Mr Wyatt who submitted a design for the Wellington testimonial in Dublin in 1814.(2) John Cornforth has suggested that he could have been involved in the redecoration of Dublin Castle and the Vice-Regal Lodge in Phoenix Park during the period between 1821 and 1828, when Richard Wellesley was Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.(3)
Other Irish clients were the second Marquess of Sligo and the third Marquess of Londonderry. For the former he designed a theatre - unexecuted - for the town of Westport in 1812(4) and a library wing at Westport House in 1819; this was destroyed by fire seven years later.(5) For the Marquess of Londonderry he and his brother Philip reconstructed Londonderry House in London in 1825-1828; it has been suggested that the brothers might also have worked for the marquess at Mount Stewart, Co. Down, at about the same date.(6)
(1) The minutes of the Board of Works for 30 May 1807 record Wyatt's demands that the Chief Secretary's premises be repaired and furnished.(IAA, Edward McParland files, Acc. 2008/44).
(2) NA/SPO, 'OP not extant' (IAA, Edward McParland files, Acc. 2008/44).
(3) John Cornforth, 'Dublin Castle II', Country Life 148, 6 Aug 1970, 345.
(4) Signed longitudinal section, dated 24 Jul 1812, in collection of Marquess of Sligo, Westport House (photograph in IAA).
(5) Mark Girouard, 'Westport House, Co. Mayo, Ireland - II', Country Life 138, 6 May 1965, 1076.
(6) Christopher Hussey, 'Mount Stewart, County Down - I', Country Life 78, 5 Oct 1935, 361.
3 work entries listed in chronological order for WYATT, BENJAMIN DEAN #
|Building:||CO. MAYO, WESTPORT, THEATRE|
|Nature:||Proposed new theatre. For Howe Peter, 2nd Marquess of Sligo.|
|Refs:||Signed longitudinal section, dated 24 Jul 1812, in collection of Marquess of Sligo, Westport House (photograph in IAA); Mark Girouard, 'Westport House, Co. Mayo, Ireland - II', Country :Life 138, 6 May 1965, 1076|
|Building:||CO. MAYO, WESTPORT HOUSE|
|Nature:||S wing containing library. Destroyed by fire in 1826. For 2nd Marquess of Sligo.
|Refs:||Mark Girouard, 'Westport House, Co. Mayo, Ireland - II', Country :Life 138, 6 May 1965, 1076; John Harris, 'The Wyatts at Westport', Connoisseur 62 (1966), 224;|
|Building:||CO. DOWN, MOUNT STEWART|
|Nature:||Hussey proposes that BDW and Philip Wyatt worked at Mount Stewart for 3rd Marquess of Londonderry as they were employed by him at Londonderry House, London, during the 1820s: 'the character of the building as a whole strongly suggests that date and the authorship of James Wyatt's sons'.|
|Refs:||Christopher Hussey, 'Mount Stewart, County Down - I', Country Life 78, 5 Oct 1935, 361|