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Description: 18, Market Square
Date Listed: 19 January 1952
English Heritage Building ID: 232160
OS Grid Reference: SP7545060510
OS Grid Coordinates: 475450, 260510
Latitude/Longitude: 52.2376, -0.8965
725/1/172 MARKET SQUARE
19-JAN-52 (South side)
Town house, late C17. Possibly designed by Henry Bell (1647-1711, Stucco-covered brick, of three bays and three storeys with attics.
Front elevation contains three, unhorned, sixteen-paned sash windows to first and second floors, separated by Ionic pilasters with swags below the capitals. There are also swags below the second-floor windows, and above bands with centrally placed consoles. There are brackets below the eaves, and a dormer window to the centre of the roof. On the ground-floor, pilasters flank the modern shop window and glazed door with overlight.
To the right of the entrance lobby a door gives access to a single open space. There are fragments of a dentilled cornice between what would have been the front and back rooms. The first and second floors are reached by an open well staircase with turned balusters. Each floor contains two main spaces, one to the front and one to the back. The first-floor front room has a dentilled plaster cornice and wooden fireplace surround, the mantelpiece supported on Doric columns. The back room also has a dentilled cornice and fireplace with dentil decoration and mantelpiece supported on consoles. Tie beams are visible in the second-floor front room; the fireplace has been covered over below the mantelpiece. The back room to the second floor has been subdivided, and retains no original features. The attic is ceiled above the purlins, and the walls are plastered leaving the principal rafters exposed.
No.18 is at the centre of a row of buildings to the south of Northampton's Market Square, one of the largest in England, and home to a market dating to 1235. In 1675 about three quarters of the town centre was destroyed by fire, and the surviving historic houses around the square date to no earlier than the late C17. These include No.18, one of the earliest of those listed buildings that face onto the square, of which there are nine on the south and west sides, all dating to between the late C17 and early C19.
Northampton Market Online; www.northamptonmarket.biz accessed on 15th Feb 2010.
REASONS FOR DESIGNATION:
18 Market Square, a late C17 town house, is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Architecture: Its well composed design includes elegant and well crafted detail.
* Intactness: Significant internal detail survives.
* Architect: Henry Bell is an architect noted for the strength of his designs, and for his best known building, the Custom House in Kings Lynn, designated at Grade I. Given his involvement in the rebuilding of Northampton and the use of his signature motif of ionic capitals with swags, it is likely that he influenced the design of 18 Market Square, contributing to the special interest of this elegant but more modest building.
* Group value: It has group value and shares many features in common with other designated buildings of similar date around the square, with which it bears comparison.
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.