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The Forest House was built in c1759 as the town house of Trafford Branston. His grandson, Roger, served in the Crimea and died from his wounds at Lucknow, Northern India, in 1857, so ending the Branston connection with this fine building.
The Forest House is the central block of one of Chester's finest surviving Georgian buildings. The large oval courtyard and iron gates at the front were removed in the early 1900s to make way for the Chester Co-op department store. The building was probably designed by Sir Robert Taylor. Appointed architect to the Bank of England, in 1764, and later Architect of the King's Works, Taylor left his fortune to Oxford University.
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