The history of the Manor House, Ryds Herrgård
Ryds Herrgård, an attractive building from the 1720s and an institution of Linköping student life is going to receive a full-face lift. The house is going to be extensively renovated so it can be a meeting place once again for both students and other residents of Linköping and beyond. In the autumn of 2019 we can look forward to again opening the doors to Ryds Manor House.
The building has a long and fascinating history stretching back to the middle ages. The estate and farm had a number of owners until 1720 when Ryds Herrgård as we know it today took shape.
From a sheep farm to other agriculture
It was Karl Gustaf Boije in 1720 that took over the farm from his father. Karl-Gustaf’s wife (who was brought up in a castle environment) believed that there needed to be a more grandiose building on the farm estate than there was already. Karl-Gustaf therefore tore down the existing farm house and replaced it with the building we see today as Ryds Herrgård. Boije started a sheep farm on the property during the 1740s and was at that time one of the most successful sheep farmers in the area.
During this period Boije constructed a barn that still exists today and makes up a part of Mikael’s Church in Ryd.
In 1794 the Manor House Ryds Herrgård changed owners and Charles Emil Cronhielm acquired the estate. Cronhielm invested vast amounts of money in Ryd and made it possible to renovate the main building. Much of the exterior that remains today originates from that time. Cronhielm also allowed the construction of a number of other farm buildings on the estate such as a stables, pig house and brewery. At that time the farm was run with other forms of agriculture rather than a sheep farm. Cronhielm died in 1806.
In 1811 Ryds Herrgård was sold and for many years the house remained empty. During 1811 and 1890 the house was only inhabited for about ten years in total.
New great times
In 1890 Ryds Herrgård acquired a new owner when Carl Thersmeden bought the building for 80 000 SEK. With Thersmeden as the owner the house went through a new period of greatness and in 1903, he fully renovated the main building. Many aspects of the renovation in 1903 remain today and shall be preserved for the future.
When Tersmeden died in 1919 the house was sold on however the new owner died suddenly and unfortunately his estate went into bankruptcy. Ryds Manor House at that time had around 90 employees and it was of the utmost urgency to quickly find a new owner. In the summer of 1921 the Ryds Herrgård was sold at auction and Linköping City Council became the new owner. Over the following decades the estate was leased out to individual farmers until the 1940s when a decision was taken to convert the estate into cooperative farming.
Ryds Herrgård becomes an agricultural cooperative
In March 1951 Sweden’s first agricultural cooperative ”Ryds Agricultural Cooperative Association” was opened. Five farmers joined together to lease and maintain the estate. The operation as an agricultural cooperative was seen as a type of experiment and pilot project and many people visited the farm to learn about the working methods. The farm continued to run in that way until the beginning of the 1960s when Linköping City Council started to plan for an expansion of the city and where Ryd was a vital part of that expansion.
In 1963 an inventory of the Ryds estate buildings was ordered by the City Planning Office. The report concluded that a number of the buildings were worthy of preservation one of them was the main building the other the barn.
Linköping becomes a university town
The planning of the city district Ryd took place at the same time as Linköping and Norrköping joined forces and started a committee to jointly succeed in establishing a University in the county. The committee agreed that Linköping would be the place where the main seat of the University should be. In 1963 the Swedish government decided to place a technical master’s education in Linköping and that continued with more education programmes during 1964 and 1965.
The establishment of the university meant that the students that came to Linköping needed somewhere to reside and when the City Council planed the city district Ryd there was also a strong consideration towards student homes. With this background the Ryd district obtained a clear student stamp in its development where approximately 1800 of the 4000 planned homes were specifically for students.
Linköpings first Student Union Centre
Ryds Herrgård, which ended up “right in the middle of the housing area” received a new mission, to act as a Student Union Centre to the city’s students. The planning commenced in 1966.
Stångåstaden had during the 1960s acquired Ryds Herrgård from Linköping City Council and therefore were responsible for all renovations. The student union in Linköping were to rent the building.
The renovations started in 1967 and the opening of Linköping’s first ever Student Union Centre took place 24th February 1968. During the renovation work a lot of the previous work carried out by Tersmeden in 1907 was maintained. The extensive changes took place in the foyer. The building was created to accommodate a café, library and rooms for socialising and studying. There was also a room in the basement that was named “hålla handen” which means “hold hands”.
A hub for the city’s student life
Since 1968 The Student Union Centre has operated as a meeting place for students. There have been many Sunday diners eaten, debates had and studies carried out. During the whole time Ryds Herrgård has been a focal point for all the city’s students.
Radio Ryd, a pioneer in radio production, was a strong presence in Ryds Herrgård during the 1970s and 80s. The radio station broadcast its programmes from the loft of the building. At the start the cables only stretched to the student housing area in Ryd but after some years the radio station became more established in Linköping.
Many artists played at Ryds Herrgård or Herrgår'n as its more fondly known before getting a break in the wider world. Or what do you say about Lars Winnerbäck, The Plan, Caesars Palace, The sounds and Marit Bergman. During the 1990s it was almost taken for granted that concerts were arranged at Ryds Herrgård.
An important part of the preservation of Ryds Herrgård are the walls full of posters from many of the artists that have played at the house. In connection with the renovation that now will be carried out these walls will be sealed and protected so they remain for future generations to also enjoy.