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The Old Farmhouse, Hadlow

Description: The Old Farmhouse

Grade: II*
Date Listed: 20 October 1954
English Heritage Building ID: 179502

OS Grid Reference: TQ6342848035
OS Grid Coordinates: 563428, 148035
Latitude/Longitude: 51.2081, 0.3382

Location: Hartlake Road, Hadlow, Kent TN11 0BL

Locality: Hadlow
Local Authority: Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council
County: Kent
Country: England
Postcode: TN11 0BL

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Explore more of the area around Hadlow, Kent at Explore Britain.

Listing Text

TQ 64 NW
6/66 The Old Farmhouse (formerly
20.10.54 listed as Thompsons Farmhouse)


Farmhouse, maybe a former manor house. Mid or late C15, refurbished to a high
standard in the early C17, late C19, renovated in 1971. Timber-framed, ground
floor level was underbuilt in brick in C19 (most replaced in 1971), hung with
peg-tiles on the first floor; late C19 extension is ochre-coloured brick;
brick stacks and original chimneyshafts; peg-tile roof.

Plan and Development: T-plan house. The main block faces south east. It has
a 4-room lobby entrance plan. The left (south western) room is a one-room
plan parlour crosswing projecting forward very slightly. It was added in the
late c19. It has a rear gable-end stack. Next to it is the inner room of the
medieval house, the little parlour of the C17 house and now entrance hall
containing the main stair. Next again the hall, the later main parlour. The
C17 lobby entrance is between these rooms in front of a large axial stack
which serves the rear kitchen block as well as the rooms each side in the main
block. At the right (north eastern) end is a study occupying the medieval
through passage and service end. Rear wing projects at right angles to rear
of the stack overlapping the entrance hall. It has an unheated narrow service
room behind.

The mid/late C15 house had a 3-room-and-through-passage plan. In the centre
was the hall,2 bays, open to the roof and heated by an open hearth fire.
Storeyed ends. To left the inner room (the present entrance hall) with
evidence that the first floor solar jettied out at the end. To right the
present study shows evidence of a through passage with 2 small service rooms
(buttery, pantry, dairy or likewise) and a stair to the chamber above. this
end, as far as can be seen, did not jetty. In the early C17 the house was
improved. The through passage was abandoned in favour of the present lobby
entrance, the hall was floored and a stack added big enough to serve 6
fireplaces, including those in the new rear block. The present main stair is
C20 but probably replaces an earlier stair there. It is not clear which if
any of the ground floor rooms was used as a kitchen. All seem to be high
status rooms.

2 storeys with attics in the roofspace.

Exterior: Irregular front fenestration. At the left end is the gabled end of
the C19 extension containing tripartite sash windows and with moulded
bargeboards. All the main block windows, 4 on the first floor and 3 on the
ground floor and 3 hipped dormers, contain C20 casements with rectangular
panes of leaded glass. The front doorway is left of centre and contains a C20
door. Old photographs (including one in National Monument Record) show the
first floor clad with domino tiles. The tall main roof is half-hipped to
right and the C19 addition is gable-ended. The chimney with its cluster of 6
tall octagonal shafts of early C17 brick is particularly impressive. Odd
pieces of the original framing show in the right end and back walls including
the jambs of the passage rear doorway. The gable end of the C17 kitchen wing
is exposed showing the relatively slight scantling of the C17 carpentry. Rear
block frame is close-studded.

Exterior: Preserves the extensive remains of the medieval house along with
its C17 additions. Each end of the old house has relatively close-set joists
of very large scantling joists. In the inner room/entrance hall there is
evidence of the jetty that end and at the other end part of the passage lower-
side screen. The screen and mortises in the joists show 2 arch-headed
doorways into the service rooms and a third to a stair (defined by a trimmer).
The hall side of the passage is a spere screen; a wide shoulder-headed arch.
This was reduced to a central doorway in the C17.

The hall has a C17 4-panel intersecting beam ceiling. All the timbers are
chamfered but the main axial beam has scroll stops, the crossbeams have runout
stops and the joists have bar-scroll stops. The large fireplace is brick with
moulded stone ashlar jambs and a (possible replacement) chamfered oak lintel.
The entrance hall/little parlour has a brick fireplace with a chamfered Tudor
arch oak lintel. The best C17 fireplace surviving is for the rear block
chamber; stone jambs and Tudor arch oak lintel with moulded surround and sunk
spandrels.There are the remains of another directly below which looks too
grand for kitchen use. The other first floor firpelaces have been blocked or
altered. All the C17 beams and most of the joists are chamfered with scroll
stops. The C17 stack disturbed some of the medieval upper hall crosswall but
it survives nearly complete at the lower end. At first floor level pairs of
curving tension braces either side of a central post and above tie-beam a
crown post with down-braces to the tie and up-braces to the collar purlin.
The construction of the hall chamber ceiling apparently affected the removal
of the central tie-beam and crown post although evidence remains of its 4-way
bracing. The hall roof timbers are smoke-blacked from the original open
hearth fire. Over the inner room/solar there is a gablet collar and evidence
of a hipped roof. The C17 block has a roof of tie-beam trusses with clasped
side purlins.

The Old Farmhouse is a wonderfully well-preserved 2-phase house. It is very
unusual for a medieval house to survive as complete as this.

The owner's synopsis of the documentation of the house goes back to the C14.
It is perhaps interesting that in the first half of the C17 it was owned by 2
men who described themselves gentlemen.

An RCHM Report with measured plans and elevations was undertaken in January
1989, subsequent to this survey.

Listing NGR: TQ6342848035

This text is a legacy record and has not been updated since the building was originally listed. Details of the building may have changed in the intervening time. You should not rely on this listing as an accurate description of the building.

Source: English Heritage

Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.