British Listed Buildings

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Rye House Gatehouse, Stanstead Abbots

Description: Rye House Gatehouse

Grade: I
Date Listed: 4 December 1951
English Heritage Building ID: 355970

OS Grid Reference: TL3857309955
OS Grid Coordinates: 538573, 209955
Latitude/Longitude: 51.7711, 0.0070

Location: Rye Road, Stanstead Abbotts, Hertfordshire EN11 0LB

Locality: Stanstead Abbots
Local Authority: East Hertfordshire District Council
County: Hertfordshire
Country: England
Postcode: EN11 0LB

Incorrect location/postcode? Submit a correction!

There is also a scheduled monument, Rye House Moated Enclosure and Gatehouse, at the same location as this building or very close to it. This may be related in some way or possibly a different name for the same structure.

Explore more of the area around Stanstead Abbots, Hertfordshire at Explore Britain.

Listing Text

(north side)
Lea Valley Park
Rye House Gatehouse
4.12.51 (Formerly listed as
The Rye House)


Gatehouse to Rye House (demolished), lower part used as a museum.
C15 for Sir Andrew Ogard a naturalised Dane (license to crenelate
1443) on this moated site beside the river. 1683 scene of the
Rye House Plot to murder Charles II. Rebuilt except gatehouse at
end of C17 (RCHM Typescript). Said to have been used as the
parish Workhouse before 1834. Site made into a pleasure garden
for London trippers c1868 by Henry Teale (1806 - 76). Site
cleared and gatehouse restored recently for Lee Valley Park. The
gatehouse is the only complete C15 part standing. Red brick in
English-bond with some diaper ornament in black headers, and
carved stonework to string courses and main entrance. Roofless
upper storey. 2 high storeys and crenellated parapet to roof. A
tall rectangular block standing on the inner edge of the moat,
facinq E. SW corner carried up as stair turret above parapet. A
hollow moulded stone string course runs around the buildinq at
the base of the parapet and is decorated by grotesque heads at
intervals. A similar string runs around the top of the stair
turret with a head at each corner. Decorative elements are
concentrated on the E front with a secondary elevation on the W
formerly facing into the courtyard. E front nearly symmetrical
with a moulded stone pointed gateway with carved spandrels in a
rectangular frame. Boarded wooden double doors. Small upright
windows to each side with elaborate moulded brick jambs and head
and label dripmould. Above the door false machicolations in
corbelled arched brickwork with relieving arch over. Advanced
wallface patterned with diaper in black brick. Central
merlon decorated by a raised rib and merlons each side pierced
by arrow loops. False machicolations with intersecting arched
corbels at a lower level on each side carry projecting diapered
panels with moulded brick frame and large corbelled oriel windows
with canted returns. These have large brick mullioned and
transomed windows, 2-light on left but 3-light on riqht, and
castellated tops. Large 1st floor window on left hand return
with square head, moulded jambs and label. W elevation has a
large pointed brick gateway in 2 chamfered orders, a small
upright window on the left with moulded jambs, rectanqular head,
and label. Corbelled 1st floor chimney rises above parapet in a
tall composite barley-sugar shaft with moulded cap and base.
Small unemphasised stair window to right. Front wall of an
attached small wing set back on N end with a 3-centred arched
doorway into the main gatehouse at the upper level, the springing
of a tunnel vault over the ground floor, and a small window in
the front wall, with 3-centred rere arch, at 2 levels. (RCHM
(1911) 210: Archaeological Journall32(1975) 111-150). Scheduled
Ancient Monument.

Listing NGR: TL3857309955

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.