Nocton Hall is a historic listed building in the village of Nocton, in Lincolnshire. Originally constructed for the Ellys family, it burnt down in 1834 and was rebuilt in 1841 for the first Earl of Ripon, who lived at the steward’s house in Nocton while the house was being built. The US Army’s 7th General Hospital was based at Nocton Hall during World War Two.
In the mid 1980s Torrie Richardson bought Nocton Hall, the surrounding wood, woodland, grassland and cottages. Selling the cottages on for redevelopment allowed him to develop Nocton Hall as a Residential Home. Nocton Hall Residential home ran a summer fête for the village on their lawn and employed many local people. Torrie’s son, Gary, took control of the business in the early 1990’s. The home ran into difficulty and closed in the mid 1990s, and was sold by the receivers to new owners, Leda Properties of Oxford. Leda also bought the RAF Hospital site from the Ministry of Defence.
While vacant there were many break-ins; fireplaces and the stair bannisters were stolen. It unfortunately was burnt down for a second time in the early hours of 24 October 2004, the fire reducing it to a shell. The investigation into the fire established that multiple fires had been set, but to date no one has been charged with arson. Due to the extensive structural damage it will now likely need to be rebuilt, if the site is not redeveloped for another purpose. An adjacent geriatric nursing care two story building has also been severely damaged by vandals since it was left vacant.RAF Nocton Hall was a 740 bed hospital under RAF control from the 1940s until 1984. It was used by civilians and forces personnel until 1984, when it was leased to the USAF as a United States Air Force wartime contingency hospital.
During the Gulf War, over 1,300 US medical staff were sent to the Hall and many were billeted at RAF Scampton. Fortunately only 35 casualties had to be treated. In its later days 13 American personnel remained to keep the hospital serviceable. RAF Nocton Hall was handed back to the Her Majesty’s Government by the USAF on 30 September 1995.
Opened: 1940 Re-deisgnated: 1943 United States Army Seventh General Hospital Re-designated: 1945 RAF Nocton Hall
Closed: Hospital closed 1982 Leased to USAF: 1984 – 1995 Formally closed 23 Jun 1995, handed back by US Forces Sep 1995
Units based here:
On America’s entry into the Great War in 1917 Nocton Hall, an 18th Century manor house, was turned into a convalescent home for young American officers. Towards the end of 1919 the now vacant Hall and its estate were sold to William H. Dennis who having little affection for domestic life in the village, did not reside there.
Having lain vacant since the departure of the American military in 1919, Nocton Hall and 200 acres of parkland was acquired by the Air Ministry in 1940 and turned into an RAF Hospital. The Hall itself was used as an Army “clearing station” until 1943, when the US Army took possession of the Hall and grounds for a second time. Nocton became home for the United States Army Seventh General Hospital, built in the grounds behind it, and the Hall was used as the Officers’ Club.
At the end of the War in 1945 the RAF selected Nocton Hall to be their permanent hospital for the county of Lincolnshire. RAF Nocton Hall was a 740 bed hospital under RAF control until 1984, used by civilians and forces personnel, one of the country’s undisputed RAF Hospitals. The decision to close Nocton Hall as a military hospital was taken on 31st March 1983.
In 1984 Nocton Hall was leased to the US Armed Forces for a third time, this time as a United States Air Force wartime contingency hospital. During the Gulf War in 1991/92 some 1300 US medical staff were sent there, many billeted at RAF Scampton. Fortunately only 35 casualties received treatment here during the conflict. In its latter days just 13 American personnel remained here to keep the hospital serviceable.
There followed a short period serving as an RAF forward outpatient department, from 1992 until 1993.
RAF Nocton Hall was again handed back to the British Government to stand empty on 30 Sep 95. After a short period serving as a private residential home, the Hall and grounds are became subject to property development having been identified for disposal by the Defence Estates.
Shortly before midnight on Sat 24 Oct 04 the Hall was set ablaze by arsonists. At its height, about 70 firefighters attended the blaze which started just before midnight. After several hours it was brought under control, but the roof collapsed and the building was severely damaged. Only a shell was to remain. A second fire in 2005 caused further damage:
- Urban Lincs Nocton Hall Forgotten Treasures gallery
- Nocton Hall fire
- BBC News: Arson probe into fire at RAF hall, 25 October 2004
- BBC News: Fire hits grounds of stately home, 18 September 2005
- BBC News: Stately home ‘needs protection’, 4 October 2005
- Leda Properties, who own the Nocton Hall site
- The Cottage Nursing Home