The Temple of Harmony, Goathurst near Bridgwater, Somerset  Grade II*


The Temple, an 18th century folly, is a replica of the Temple of Portunous in Rome.  The Temple of Harmony was built by Sir Charles Kemeys Tynte in 1767 to designs by Thomas Prowse, with features by Robert Adam and Thomas Stocking.  


The Temple stands in the grounds of Halswell House, which was a small manor recorded in the Doomsday Book.  A grander house was built in 1536 with Tudor, parterre-style gardens.  The north range was rebuilt in 1689 and this is what you see today.  The transformation of the landscape and gardens into a true Georgian pleasure gardens was accomplished by Sir Charles  between 1740 and 1785. The House and its follies are currently being restored.




The SBPT acquired the Temple in 1993.  By then the surrounding parkland had been sold to a farmer and building was in a desperate state of repair, having been used for many years as a cattle shelter.  The SBPT restored it with grants from English Heritage and others.  The SBPT also arranged for Philip Thomason, a sculptor, to make a copy of John Walsh's marble statue of Terpsichore, the Muse of joy in the dance and lyric poetry.  This stands in the Temple.  The SBPT helped Taunton Museum to acquire the original statue.