On one early map of what is now the north of Plymouth there is but one name in the middle of the triangle created by Crownhill, Derriford and Tamerton Foliot – that of Uplands. Mentioned on title deeds as early as ‘the fifth year of KingGeorge II’ – 1731, the property then seemed to be in a variety of hands.
In 1803 part of the estate was sold by one Reverend gentleman to another; as the Rev Joseph Richards purchased Uplands from the Rev Francis Luce. Richards then either built or extended what was recognised as a fine 20-room, 18-acre Georgian residence.
Ten years later however the property was sold again, this time to Jonathan Elford of Pound.
Another ten years on and following Elford’s demise, John Smith became the new owner. It was while the Smiths were here that the poet Tennyson visited Uplands, on his way back from Cornwall, in 1848. While there he informed Smith’s two daughters, Caroline and Helen, that he would ‘rather stay with you bright girls than dine with Mr W.’ History does not readily reveal Mr W’s identity, but we do know that the romantic Helen was later in love with a young man who went to India and that after letters between them were stopped she pined away and died of broken heart, at the age of 28.
The house survived for another century and more and was eventually sold for development by its then owners Norman and Elspeth Sitters, in 1984.