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Description: Newtown Farmhouse
Date Listed: 17 October 1985
English Heritage Building ID: 267476
OS Grid Reference: ST5383135212
OS Grid Coordinates: 353831, 135212
Latitude/Longitude: 51.1143, -2.6609
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572/6/4 BURGESS LANE
17-OCT-85 WEST TOWN
(Formerly listed as:
Farmhouse, of probable C16 origin, with C17, C18 and later alterations.
MATERIALS: Constructed of coursed and squared lias rubble and pantile roof, with Doulting stone coped verges and window dressings and end brick stacks.
PLAN: Single depth, two storey, linear range running east-west with series of single storey lean-to extensions to rear and sides. The original house comprised the west and central bays; the east bay and offshuts are of C18 and C19 date.
EXTERIOR: Front elevation is of 3 bays. The western and central bays have 2-light ogee moulded stone mullioned windows with leaded lights and turnbuckle style catches. The eastern bay has 3-light wooden casements. The central doorway has been inserted into a former window opening and both this and the window to its left (west) have stone dripmoulds. The battened door is a modern replacement.
The gable ends both have a single window to first floor; that to the west end is bricked in and matches the stone mullion windows on the façade and has a dripmould. There is a datestone in the east gable of 1794 with two initials above which are unclear. There are single-storey extensions to both gable ends and east side of rear; the rear outshut has a slate roof and a small brick stack. Above this rear outshut, to the right, are two stone mullion windows at first floor, matching those to the front elevation.
INTERIOR: The ground floor has two principal rooms off a central hall, with two further rooms in the lean-to extension to the rear. Front: West end room: fireplace to gable end with chamfered bressummer with butterfly stops and to the left of this is a plank door cupboard. The former external window on the north wall is used as a cupboard, with panelled doors. A plank and muntin partition with deeply chamfered beam separates this room from the hallway; at the northern end of the screen is a doorway under a Tudor arch. Hallway: enclosed stair to rear of hallway with plank door with wrought iron hinges, the opposite under-stair cupboard has a similar door. There is a deeply chamfered beam with run out stops. To the right is a cider hatch, accessed to the north with serving hatch facing the hallway and boarded barrel opening below. The remains of a beam, which may indicate the position of an original fireplace, is embedded in the southern end of the wall. East end room: large inglenook fireplace at gable end with modern chamfered bressummer. The cupboard to left of this may be masking a bread oven. Rear: Former rear external wall retains two stone mullion windows to the west end; that to the east is open and looks onto the hallway. Part of a moulded stone surround is evident in this wall above the doorway to the hall, although it is unclear what purpose it served. There is an elm screen in the west end room, moved from the east end. A brick corner fireplace stands at the division between the two rooms and the east end room has restored oak beams. The west end front room, hallway and east end rear room have a flagstone floor.
First floor: The west end room has a chamfered beam with run out stops. At the east end is a narrow stair to the right of the stack giving access to the attic.
Roof: According to the SVBRG report (see SOURCES) the west end truss (which sits over a first floor partition, which is in turn over the plank and muntin partition at ground floor) has large principals which are tenoned and pegged at the apex with a cambered collar. The ridge piece is missing but was notched into the apex and the principals have a pair of purlin trenches and one windbrace slot each. Stave holes in the principals and collar indicate that the truss was originally closed with wattle and daub.
HISTORY: The house would appear to have C16 origins based on its roof structure, partitions and wall thickness, and was upgraded in the C17 with the addition of stone mullioned windows. It is unclear where the original entrance was, or whether there was a second fireplace to the east side of what is now the hallway. The house was extended to the east in the late C18 and the front doorway inserted into one of the window openings. The two flights of stairs also appear to date from the C18.
SOURCES: J. Dallimore, Newtown Farmhouse, Burnetts Lane, Baltonsborough (2003), unpublished. Somerset Vernacular Building Research Group.
REASONS FOR DESIGNATION DECISION: Newtown Farmhouse is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Essentially a mid-to-late-C16 house, upgraded in the C17 whose changing plan form over its long history is readable
* It preserves a significant proportion of historic fabric in a range of local vernacular building materials
* Good quality internal features including C16 plank and muntin screen, C17 windows with turnbuckle catches, and C18 joinery.
* Survival of parts of C16 roof structure.
* Careful restoration of the house has revealed a number of original features, which have greatly contributed to the understanding of its development and enhanced its interest.
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.