Wycliffe Hall was a medieval fortified house and home to the Wycliffe family who held the manor from the C12th century until 1611. It is believed that John Wycliffe (1330-84) the philosopher, theologian and religious reformer who was responsible for the first translation of the bible into English in 1382 and whose followers were known as ‘Lollards’ may have lived here although he was born at Hipswell in Richmondshire.
Modifications were made to the house in the C17th and in the C18th the east wing was extensively remodeled by the third Marmaduke Tunstall (1743-90) who added a first floor, a library and a museum. A fire in the 1950s necessitated further work and some of the original fabric was lost.
The name Wycliffe is Old English for ‘cliff by the water’ no doubt referring to Howbury Scar overlooking the bend of the River Tees further downstream. It is likely that the village has Anglo-Saxon origins as indeed have many of the surrounding villages and churches although no Roman finds have been recorded despite the presence of the Roman camp at Greta Bridge.
Wycliffe Hall is located on the south bank of the River Tees east of the village of Wycliffe in County Durham (OS Grid Ref NZ 119142)