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1-4 River Houses

A Grade II Listed Building in Brightling, East Sussex

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Latitude: 50.9507 / 50°57'2"N

Longitude: 0.4113 / 0°24'40"E

OS Eastings: 569469

OS Northings: 119577

OS Grid: TQ694195

Mapcode National: GBR NTM.8SV

Mapcode Global: FRA C6RL.G24

Entry Name: 1-4 River Houses

Listing Date: 3 April 2012

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1407826

Location: Brightling, Rother, East Sussex, TN32

County: East Sussex

District: Rother

Civil Parish: Brightling

Traditional County: Sussex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): East Sussex

Church of England Parish: Brightling St Thomas a Becket

Church of England Diocese: Chichester

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Range of cottages, late C18 or early C19.


MATERIALS: The ground floors are of sandstone rubble with handmade red brick quoins and the first floors are tile-hung, probably over a timber frame. The hipped roofs are tiled and have two square brick chimneystacks with moulded cornices, each shared by two cottages. The rear slope has a catslide roof to the ground floor.

PLAN: Nos.1-3 are of two-bays each but No. 4 is of three-bays with an additional brick lean-to extension, suggesting it was built for a worker of higher rank than the others, perhaps a foreman.

EXTERIOR: The principal front faces south-east and has later C19 wooden casements within the original window openings. Nos. 1-3 have plank doors with rectangular glazed panels within moulded wooden architraves. The doorcases to Nos. 1 and 2 are concealed behind later C20 porches with sandstone bases, glazed above with hipped tiled roofs. No. 4 has an early C20 gabled wooden porch on a brick base with a gabled tiled roof with wooden bargeboards. The solid wooden side walls have quatrefoil-shaped cutouts. The C19 brick lean-to addition has a ground floor small-framed metal-framed casement. The south-west side elevation has a C20 wooden bow window. The north-west, or rear elevation, has three courses of stretcher bricks at the top of the sandstone ground floor, C19 casement windows and plank doors. No. 2 has C20 tiles to the roof and No. 3 has a flat-roofed C20 dormer. No. 4 has a rear projection with an external brick chimneystack.

INTERIOR: No. 1 retains an open fireplace with wooden bressumer and breadoven and a further plank door on the ground floor. Similar features may survive in the other cottages.


Nos 1-4 River Houses are thought to have been constructed for local stone quarry workers. The properties appear on the First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch map of 1874 named River Houses and divided into four separate cottages, No. 4 being wider than the others with a projection to the rear. The footprint does not change on subsequent editions except that on the Third Edition map of 1909 No. 4 has acquired a porch.

Reasons for Listing

Nos 1-4 River Houses are listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Regional materials: built partly of local sandstone with characteristic Sussex first floor tile-hanging over a timber frame.
* Specialist function: thought to have been built for local quarry workers.
* Plan form: unusually, the end cottage was built larger than the others, possibly for a foreman or overseer.
* Degree of intactness: the window openings are unaltered and the plank front doors are original despite the replacement of windows and the erection of some porches; internal survival of open fireplaces and plank doors.

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