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Latitude: 51.0117 / 51°0'42"N
Longitude: -4.2065 / 4°12'23"W
OS Eastings: 245310
OS Northings: 125908
OS Grid: SS453259
Mapcode National: GBR KJ.JJ6F
Mapcode Global: FRA 262F.WJV
Entry Name: Old Ford
Listing Date: 8 November 1949
Last Amended: 19 April 1993
Source: Historic England
Source ID: 1200933
English Heritage Legacy ID: 375902
Location: Bideford, Torridge, Devon, EX39
Civil Parish: Bideford
Built-Up Area: Bideford
Traditional County: Devon
Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon
Church of England Parish: Bideford St Mary
Church of England Diocese: Exeter
SS42NE NEW ROAD
842-1/2/201 (West side)
08/11/49 Old Ford
(Formerly Listed as:
Old Ford House)
Formerly known as: Ford Farm.
Detached house: probably a gentleman's house converted to a
farmhouse in C19. Late medieval, possibly C14, with added
medieval cross-wing; extended in late C16; cross-wing
remodelled and further extended in late C17 or very early C18.
Stone rubble. Slate roof, the cross-wing hipped at the front.
Old red-brick chimneys on left gable-wall of hall, and on both
gable-walls of cross-wing. C16 stone-rubble chimney with
tapered cap on right gable-wall.
Plan: single-storeyed late-medieval hall (now lofted) with
through-passage at right-hand end. To right, separated by a
thick wall, a late-medieval cross-wing projecting front and
back; contains C17/C18 staircase with contemporary parlour in
front and service-room behind; addition at rear, probably a
C17/C18 kitchen. On right-hand side, at right-angles to
cross-wing, a late C16 parlour-range, converted to
salting-house probably in C19. To left of hall, beyond rebuilt
gable-wall, a converted barn of C16 or C17.
Hall single-storeyed with loft; remainder 2-storeyed with
semi-basement below front of cross-wing. Hall has doorway to
right with 2-panelled C18 door. Sash-window to left set in a
partly-blocked opening; 12 over 8 panes. Above doorway a
gabled dormer with plain bargeboards; 2-light wood casement
with 2 panes per light. Buttress at left-hand end. Converted
barn to left has 2 windows per storey; all with segmental
stone arches and fixed 4-pane wood sashes. Cross-wing has
buttress at each side of gable; blocked window in each storey;
plank door in basement with plain wood frame.
Sash-windows in both side-walls and in front of C16 addition,
the wider ones with margin-panes; upper-storey windows rise
slightly above eaves-level and have pent-roofs.
In rear wall of hall a 4-light limestone window with
flat-splay mullions (2 missing) and straight hood-mould;
probably partly restored in C19. Rear wall of cross-wing has
2-light wood-mullioned window: ogee mullions, later 9-paned
wood casements. In gable a stone plaque inscribed WC 1733.
Flanking chimneybreast in gable-wall of C16 addition are 2
second-storey slit windows, the sharply-pointed openings cut
from single pieces of wood.
INTERIOR: hall has late medieval smoke-blackened roof with 2
raised-cruck trusses on wooden pads; chamfered arch-braces,
cranked collars, butt-purlins, square-set ridge, windbraces;
left truss has blades with tops scarfed above the collar. At
passage-end a stud-and-panel screen, the studs chamfered and
with diagonal-cut stops. Above it a chamber projecting into
the hall where it has a late C16 or early C17 ovolo-moulded
bressumer with step-stops. In rear wall a fireplace with
cambered chamfered wood lintel. In left gable-wall a large,
later segmental-headed fireplace.
Through-passage has rear doorway with boxed segmental-headed
arch. In right wall an unglazed borrowed light into
service-room: 2-light ovolo-moulded wood frame with original
In cross-wing C17/C18 wood stair leads off passage: single
flight branching off left and right at the top; closed
strings, turned balusters, moulded handrail, square newels
with flat moulded caps; against wall at top a moulded skirting
with ogee-moulded profile to match each tread.
Ground-floor front room of cross-wing has complete C17/C18
panelled room; raised bolection-moulded panels; wood
bolection-moulded chimneypiece with C19 enriched iron grate; 2
round-headed cupboards with shaped shelves; shutters with
ovolo-moulded raised-and-fielded shutters; coved cornice. Rear
ground-floor room has only a plain unchamfered ceiling-beam.
Cross-wing roof is a lighter version of that over hall, also
with 2 trusses; no smoke-blackening; angled ridge; bird's
mouthed collars forming intermediate trusses. C16 addition has
chamfered beams with scroll-stops; remains of dado with
moulded rail and skirting; solid granite trough, probably for
salting meat or fish with 2 compartments. Room above has late
C16 stone chimneypiece: Tudor-arched with ogee, hollow and
half-round mouldings and urn-stops; frieze of roundels and
lozenges filled with flowers and fleurs-de-lis. Original
roof-trusses with straight feet.
The house also contains several early doors, either with
raised-and-fielded ovolo-moulded panels or simple vertical
planks. Converted barn (which probably had a domestic function
originally) has chamfered beams with step-stops and chamfered
joists with run-out stops. Old roof-timbers include one blade
of a raised cruck with threaded purlins.
Old Ford is remarkable as a well-preserved medieval
hall-and-cross-wing house, a type very rare in Devon,
particularly at vernacular level. It is believed to have
adjoined an early fording-place on the River Torridge, and has
been suggested as the former Manor-house of the Grenville
family. The Bideford Community Archive has floor-plans and
sections (not entirely accurate).
(Bideford Community Archive: Plans and elevations; Goaman M:
Old Bideford and District: Bristol: 1968-: P.19; Pridham TL:
Devonshire Celebrities: Exeter: 1869-: P.105).
Listing NGR: SS4531025908
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