A cruck-framed hall house, now in use as a storage barn, of late-medieval date, with later alterations, and C19 and late-C20 extensions. The late-C20 bay extension to the north end is not of special interest.
Reason for Listing
Bank Farm Barn approximately 60m north-west of Bank Farm is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Architectural interest: as a former late-medieval hall house; the roof structure in particular shows clear signs of good architectural detailing and decoration, identifying the likely function and hierarchy of the building;
* Construction: most of the surviving timber framing is of good quality and displays vernacular building techniques and decoration;
* Survival of historic fabric: a significant proportion of the timber framing has survived, including a large proportion of the cruck-framed roof which provides important stylistic dating evidence
The building is a late-medieval cruck-framed hall house that is now an agricultural building. An analysis of the plan and historic fabric of this four-bay former hall house indicates that the northern end bay may have originally been used as a byre, while the rest of the building provided for living accommodation. The building does not appear to have had a floor inserted over the central bays, nor is there any evidence of an inserted chimney as would be expected if it had remained in continued domestic use. It is, therefore, likely that at a relatively early stage in its history the house was abandoned and was subsequently taken over entirely for animal husbandry. In the C19 the former hall house was extended to the south with a stone rubble single-storey addition and was further extended in the late-C20 with a modern bay added to the north. It is now one of a number of agricultural buildings in the farm complex, many of which are modern steel-frame construction, and is currently used for storage.
MATERIALS: a timber frame on a stone plinth. The exterior has been re-clad with timber boards and weatherboarding, though there has been some loss of boarding. The gable pitched roof is covered with corrugated metal sheeting. A later single-storey extension to the south end is constructed of uncoursed stone-rubble under a corrugated metal sheet roof. The modern bay to the north end has a timber frame covered with corrugated metal sheeting.
PLAN: the building has a rectangular plan on a north-west to south-east axis. It consists of four bays (from the north to south, bays one to four) and is single-storey; although a first-floor has been inserted in bay one (north end). It is understood to have been originally built as a hall house with byre in bay one, a cross passage in bay two, an open hall in bay three and a solar in bay four (south end). A lower single-story extension has been added to the south end and a modern bay added to the north.
EXTERIOR: the building sits on a hill slope. It contains significant amounts of the original timber frame including many of its original pegged timber uprights. Later timber boards have been used to clad the walls. Some of the original timber frame has been lost due to access issues, in particular the west elevations of bay two and four. Though the original window and door openings do not remain, the evidence of their location can be seen in the location of the mortises in the existing fabric. The east elevation sits to the rear of a later adjoining cattle shed. The ground on this side is lower than on the west and has a large exposed stone rubble-wall plinth. Stone steps and partial stone door jambs lead up to bay two, corresponding with the likely entrance to the cross passage. The north end also retains large parts of its timber framing and is now obscured by the modern extension.
INTERIOR: the roof carpentry consists of five crucks, all of which survive either wholly or partially. Most of the trusses comprise a pair of cruck-blades with a high collar, central post and supporting rail. The exception is the truss that sits between bays two and three. This consists of a pair of cruck-blades with a high collar, both of which are chamfered. The truss is open below and above contains a decorated apex. Originally this took the form of a central quatrefoil flanked by two trefoils, created by vee struts and cusping. One of the vee-struts has been removed, and now the decorated apex only partially survives. The rest of the roof structure consists of pegged purlins and wall plates. Evidence of the use of an open hearth in the former hall can be seen in the smoke blackening of the principal truss and ridge vents. Bays two, three and four are open to the roof, with partial brick infill at the base of some of the trusses. Bay one contains an inserted first floor and doorways with baton and plank doors at the base of the trusses on either side, all later insertions.
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.