Members of the Blythe family occupied Bishops' House from 1554 until 1753
Bishops’ House only acquired its present name in victorian times and before then had been known by various names (see the names of Bishops’ House). ‘Bishops’ House’ stuck when victorian historians, who did not know the precise age of the building, connected the Blythe family who had been occupants of the building for two hundred or so years with two bishops. Geoffrey Blythe (died c.1530) was Bishop of Coventry and Lichfield and John (died 1499) was Bishop of Salisbury. They were indeed prominent members of this family, but tree ring dating of the building has established beyond doubt that both were long gone when the building we see today was built.
Bishops’ House passed out of ownership by the Blythe family in 1757, and since then a variety of families have occupied the building. In 1890 ownership passed to Sheffield Corporation at around the time the estate Bishops’ House was in became a park. Most, but not all, of the occupants since then have been the families of park keepers. Bishops’ House only stopped being a home in 1974, when the last occupants were asked to leave and restoration began to create the museum we find today.
You can find out much more about the many people who have lived at Bishops’ House in the sections below.