Five things: Spenfield House, Weetwood, Leeds

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Think you know Spenfield House in Weetwood? Think again.

The house is Grade II-listed and designed by George Corson, architect of the Grand Theatre and the Tiled Hall in the library. It is considered one of the finest Victoria villas in Leeds.

It was built in 1875 by banker James Walter Oxley in local gritstone. The owner’s initials appear on monograms throughout the gothic revival-style house.

Spenfield caught the eye of writer Sir John Betjeman when he visited Leeds in 1968, and he filmed his visit to the villa, where he was particularly impressed with the Peacock Room.

The Oxley family seat was Oxley Hall on Weetwood Lane, which is now a university hall of residence. James’s father Henry was the first Lord Mayor of Leeds.

The building’s future is uncertain after a developer applied to convert it into apartments and build new homes in the grounds. Local residents objected, saying the plans were unsuitable.

Greenpeace campaigners wearing emperor penguin masks and dressed in black and white in City Square, Leeds
  Antarctic Commission will meet to decide whether to create the largest protected area on earth ,an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary. At right  are Alan Rawlinson and Jane Harnet Jt Local Network Co-ordinators Greenpeace

This is why there were penguins marching through Leeds city centre yesterday