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Pitter's Farm

A Grade II Listed Building in Calne Without, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.4188 / 51°25'7"N

Longitude: -2.0663 / 2°3'58"W

OS Eastings: 395482

OS Northings: 168862

OS Grid: ST954688

Mapcode National: GBR 2SZ.SHF

Mapcode Global: VHB41.4LGR

Entry Name: Pitter's Farm

Listing Date: 16 November 2011

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1403367

Location: Calne Without, Wiltshire, SN15

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Calne Without

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Derry Hill Christ Church

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury

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A house of 1925 by the architect Sir Edward Guy Dawber incorporating an earlier house.


A Queen Anne style house of c1925 to a design by Sir Edward Guy Dawber for Major H R Yorke, incorporating an earlier farmhouse of c1843.

MATERIALS: built in red brick and stone rubble with stone ashlar quoins under a hipped stone-tiled roof with a flat roof to centre. It has tall external full-height stacks in brick and stone rubble to the north and east and a central brick stack to the south-west front.

PLAN: the plan is elongated with the main entrance to the south giving access to a central hallway with a door to the left leading to a large hall which gives access to the parlour and dining room in the west cross wing; stairs lead to the first floor bedrooms. The kitchen and servants’ hall are in the east part of the earlier farmhouse, where a narrow passage runs through the single storey east wing containing the kitchen, formerly the dairy and separating room, which was recently extended by two bays. The original kitchen is now in use as a small lounge, and the former larder and heating chamber have become a utility room. Here, at the end of the hallway, servants’ stairs lead to the upper floors, and the two bedrooms in the attic.

EXTERIOR: two storeys with attic. Flat-faced stone mullions throughout, and four small dormers to the attic. It has an irregular south elevation of five bays with three bays to the right, belonging to the earlier house, and the projecting dining room and parlour and service rooms to the left. The main entrance has a raised and fielded door set in a bolection moulded stone surround, topped with a broken scroll pediment with a pedestal with ball finial to the centre. The stair window is a tall, two by three fixed light mullion.

The north elevation is built in local stone rubble, except for the slightly recessed bay to the west and attached porch to the east, in red brick. To the right it has a tall external stack in stone and brick and a canted bay window with a stone-tiled roof. To the left is a mid C19 timber water pump that survives in situ. It is marked on the 1887 OS map and drawn by Dawber on his 1924 survey of the earlier farmhouse.

INTERIOR: Some internal features of the former farm house survive in situ, but most of the interior dates from the early C20 and survives mostly intact. Features and fittings include panelled doors with brass knobs and moulded architraves; decorative wrought iron Arts and Crafts style window furniture; brass plate light switches and radiators throughout; and cornices to the main rooms in a variety of designs. The oak stairs have alternating fluted and turned balusters with coffered panelling on the underside. The parlour contains oak plank floors and a Tudor style stone fire surround. The dining room, also with oak floors, has a broad bolection moulded stone fire surround. At first floor level, the landing is defined by plain round arches to either side, and has a built-in linen cupboard and a dressing room between the two bedrooms in the west wing. The dog leg service stair in plain Arts and Craft style has slender stick balusters and newel-posts which drop below the stringcourse.


Pitter’s Farm is situated to the north-west of Sandy Lane, a small hamlet. The Tithe Map of 1839 shows Pitter's Farmhouse as having a T-shaped plan with L-shaped outbuildings lining a courtyard to its north-east. Documentary evidence indicates that the farmhouse was rebuilt in c1843 by Thomas Bowsher for William Money Kyrle. The farm is marked on the 1887 Ordnance Survey map and shown as having a roughly square footprint with a small farmyard enclosed by outbuildings to its north-east. In the early C20, the farm was bought by Major H R Yorke who commissioned the architect Sir Edward Guy Dawber (1861 - 1938) to remodel and significantly extend the existing farmhouse. Plans and elevations by Dawber of 1924 show the earlier farmhouse as a modest building with a pitched slate roof and gable-end stacks. The symmetrical brick south elevation had a central door with sash windows to both floors, and the irregular rear elevation, in stone rubble, had leaded casement windows under brick arches. Dawber’s proposal drawings of 1925 for the new house include plans, sections and elevations, and show that the farmhouse was to be given an extensive Queen Anne style make-over with flat-faced, stone mullioned and leaded casement windows throughout. It was extended to the west with a two storey L-shaped wing incorporating a dining room and parlour with bedrooms above. The old parlour was converted into a hall in which the main stair was inserted leading to the first floor only. A separate service stair, leading to the first floor and attic, was inserted in the north end of the house. To the east, the house was extended with a single storey Dairy and Separating Room, and a Larder with a Heating Chamber below. Although not shown on any of Dawber’s drawings, it is likely that he designed the formal gardens to the south and west of the farm house, and converted the existing farm buildings to the north-east. The latter were much altered in the late 1960s or early 1970s, when further farm buildings, in concrete and metal, including a large milking shed, were erected to the south-east and north-east of the farmhouse. Since the later C20 Pitter’s Farm has ceased use as an agricultural holding.

Sir Edward Guy Dawber was an Edwardian architect and watercolourist, best known for his domestic architecture in the Cotswold vernacular tradition; in some cases he also designed formal gardens for his houses. Examples of his domestic architecture are included in Hermann Muthesius’s ‘Das Englishe Haus’. From 1887 Dawber trained in the practice of Sir Ernest George and Harold Peto, but in 1890 he set up his own practice in Gloucestershire and a year later also in London. He was the author of several books on English vernacular architecture, including ‘Old Cottages, Farm Houses, and other Stone Buildings in the Cotswold District’ published in 1905. From 1925 to 1927 he was President of the Royal Institute of British Architects, and in 1926 he became co-founder and first President of the Council for the Preservation of Rural England. In 1928 he received the Royal Gold Medal for architecture and he was knighted in 1936.

Reasons for Listing

Architectural interest: it is a good example of small domestic architecture of 1925 by Sir Edward Guy Dawber, a well-regarded architect, using good quality materials and architectural detailing.
Interior: its internal layout expresses the lifestyle of its original inhabitants and contains good quality, bespoke fixtures and fittings that form an important part of the overall design.
Intactness: the house, both internally and externally, has survived mostly complete.

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