House, early C19, with some later alterations and additions.
Reason for Listing
146 Eastgate, an early-C19 villa, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Architectural interest: the design of this early-C19 villa is restrained but carefully considered, with attention paid to materials, decorative detail and craftsmanship;
* Interior detail: internal decorative detail is also of good quality and displays a high degree of craftsmanship;
* Intactness and alteration: this is an early-C19 house, the fabric and detail of which survives substantially intact. The impact of later alterations is not sufficient to significantly detract from the outer appearance of the house, nor from the overall quality of design and craftsmanship of both exterior and interior;
* Group value: it has group value with the Grade II listed 140 and 142 Eastgate, a pair of early to mid-C19 houses immediately to the west.
The town of Louth in Lincolnshire, often referred to as the ‘Capital of the Wolds’ has Saxon origins, and at the time of the Domesday survey was one of Lincolnshire’s 7 market towns, with a population of 600. Its medieval core is still discernable in the town’s street pattern, and was bounded by the River Lud, the streets of Gospelgate and Kidgate to the south and Church Street to the east. Street names including the suffix ‘gate’ abound in the medieval core, which is signed from a great distance in every direction by the spire of the St James Church, completed in 1505, the tallest such spire of any parish church in England. Louth’s medieval prosperity was derived from exporting wool and grain, and its magnificent parish church is testimony to the wealth generated by agriculture in the region, and by Louth’s relative proximity to the east coast. The town’s population was reduced by three-quarters by outbreaks of plague in the 1630s, and by the early C18 economic prosperity had understandably waned considerably. However, the opening of the Louth-Tetney canal in 1770 heralded a new era of prosperity, and the growth of industries related not only to the region’s agriculture such as malting and grain processing, but also activities such as tanning, boatbuilding and warehousing. Much of this development took place around the canal terminus at Riverhead, and the growth of the town eastwards, along Eastgate James Street and Walkergate.
In 1848, the East Lincolnshire Railway came to Louth, extending trade and communication links beyond those of the canal, and further enhancing the town’s economic strength. An expanding population stimulated the development of terraced housing and villas, churches, chapels, schools and a range of public buildings all graphically captured in the remarkable ‘Louth Panorama’ a two section painting by a local man, William Brown. The Panorama presents a view of the town from high in the spire of St James Church. It portrays Louth at the height of its development and prosperity, shortly after the arrival of the railway, set in its surrounding rural landscape, with the east coast seascape in the background. The structure of the town has changed remarkably little since the Panorama was created, and Louth has mercifully escaped the large-scale post-war redevelopment experienced by many communities in England. Louth remains a thriving historic market town with a high proportion of well-preserved C19 buildings.
Eastgate is first documented in a charter of 1317 which contains a reference to a property at the junction of Eastgate and the street now called Northgate. This seems to have remained almost the east extent of continuous development on the north side of the street until the second half of the C19; both a map of 1839 and the sketches William Brown made in 1844 for his Panorama (first shown in 1847) depict a scattering of properties east of the junction with Northgate, including the House of Correction (now the site of almshouses, built in 1885), while to the south development was continuous in 1839 up to Albion Place (in 1889 named Leakes Court), with the spread of industry and terraced housing taking place after 1839 up to Holy Trinity Church, built as a chapel of ease in 1834. 146 Eastgate is shown on both William Brown’s panorama and on the 1939 map of Louth, almost at the eastern limit of continuous development to the south of Eastgate. Although all the evidence suggests an earlier C19 date for the house, a tie above a window in the south section to the rear is dated 1841; this may indicate a later addition, or repair and consolidation of an earlier building. In the mid to late C20 the house was subdivided and tenanted, and is currently (2013) undergoing repair and restoration.
House, c.1830s; section to the rear (south) has cast iron tie dated 1841 and has late-C19 and C20 additions; the house is built of brick with slate roof, tiled to south section.
EXTERIOR: set at an angle to the street, its front elevation facing the corner of Eastgate and Maiden Row. The early-C19 house is built of high quality brick laid in Flemish bond. It has two storeys and cellars and is L shaped with shallow pitched, hipped slate roofs. The section to the south, set into the L, has a pitched tiled roof. There are three ornate chimney stacks above the main ridge aligned south-west to north-east, and a single stack above the ridge of the tiled roof. The main slate roof has deep bracketed eaves. The front door is reached up steps rising from the street and has a shouldered architrave, as do the windows to the ground floor to this and the north-east elevation. The first floor windows have simple moulded architraves, but the south-west elevation of this range is blind. The front door is four panelled, the upper two glazed, with a glazed rectangular overlight; to the right is a speaking tube and night bell. Above the door is a canopy supported on scrolled consoles; the top of the canopy forms a balcony with ornate iron work balustrade. An arched opening onto the balcony contains French windows and lunette overlight. The arch has a raised keystone and the doors are flanked by pilasters. There are windows to either side of the front door and balcony, and there are plain bands at cill level and below the eaves brackets running continuously around all four elevations. The north-east elevation has a double height bow window, with three windows to both ground and first floors, and also a ground floor bow with flat roof with wide bracketed eaves with band below, replicating the house roof. The south-east elevation has a six over six unhorned sash window, but all other windows in the c.1830 house are single paned unhorned sashes.
The section to the south is built of red-brown brick laid in English Garden bond. It has one main elevation facing south-west which has a dentilled cornice below the eaves and two over two sash windows alternating with four over eight, two of each. The ground floor has three four over eight sashes, that to the north slightly higher than the other two. Above the lintel of this window is a circular cast iron end of a tie, dated 1841. All these windows are under segmental brick arches. To the north of this the late C19 addition to the south-east elevation is clearly visible in the brickwork. Its north face contains a door with a plain architrave and canopy supported on simple scrolled brackets. To the south of the C19 addition is a C20 single storey lean-to with slate roof.
INTERIOR: the ground-floor plan consists of a two rooms to either side of a central entrance hall, at the end of which is a step up to a staircase hall, also with a room to either side. The ceiling of the entrance hall has a deep moulded cornice and the floor is tiled; the front door upper panels and overlight are glazed with stained and plain glass in a geometric pattern. The doors to the front rooms to either side of the hall have six double recessed panels and retain original door furniture. Both rooms contain ornate plaster ceiling roses and deep moulded cornices, but the original fireplaces (as elsewhere in the house) were removed in the late C20 and have been replaced with reclaimed examples of varying dates.
The opening between the entrance and stair halls has ornate consoles to either side. The room to the left of the stair hall has a door with five fielded panels and contains a cast iron fireplace and a slightly less elaborate ceiling rose than those to the front rooms. The door to the room to the right is similar to those to the front rooms and has a decorative brass fingerplate. The panelling and fireplace are not original. The service rooms to the back contain little historic detail.
To the right of the stair hall is an open tread dog leg stair with handrail with volute end and curtail step, its ornate newell post and twisted balusters with base and tops with delicate tendril decoration. At mezzanine level a door gives access to rooms to the rear; there is a narrow arched window with coloured margin lights at the turn of the stair, and a domed roof light above. The landing has a single room to either side; an opening between the landing and a corridor giving access to three rooms at the front of the house has decorative consoles similar to those to the ground floor.
The cellars have brick arches and niches for storage.
SUBSIDIARY ITEMS: to the north and west of the house is a low brick wall, towards the corner of the street meeting square brick piers capped with stone. These are set wide apart at the pavement, with walls curving inwards towards the house to either side of the steps that rise to the front door. To the south of the steps is a door to the garden.
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.