Buildings Research with Summaries
2 Bell Lane is a modest cottage, located on the south side of the lane, which is all that remains of an ancient river access and very likely access for fording the Thames, pre-dating the medieval bridge. Bell Lane also formed the boundary between Bensington and Henley, No 2 Bell Lane being on the Henley side. A brick and flint building of 17th and 18th-century dates, originally of 2 bays, but extended; a cellar and inglenook fireplace. Some timber-framed walls are visible, now inside, but they may have been outside walls originally. No measured drawings were made.
73, 73a &75 Bell Street is an un-prepossessing house with a rendered façade, cross windows, and a raised front roof over 2/3 of its frontage. The attic (only No 73/73a were inspected) reveals a timber-framed building of quality and age. Its arch-braced central truss, wind braces, purlins, and rafters are smoke-blackened. The original roof remains and survives well under the raised and slated front roof slope, as well as at the unaltered back. No dendro dating was possible as the timbers are fast grown with insufficient growth rings, but a mid C15th building date is estimated for this large 4-bay building, just outside the medieval town boundary, where there was opportunity to build on plots with substantial width.
93 – 95 Bell Street is a 4-bay timber-framed building of outstanding quality, this however only becomes apparent inside. The rendered façade and sash windows give it the appearance of an ‘early C 18th’ building (Listing entry). The double bay g.f. room of No. 95 has impressive, hollow chamfer moulding on posts, braces, and transverse beam. These are also used in the first floor chambers. The adjoining bays on the south side were part of an open hall. Parts of the arch-braced truss survive in the attic of No. 93. It was dendro dated to 1436-44.
A rear extension of slight, late framing was dendro dated to 1758/9, most likely belonging to the period when the building was a bakery; a large bread oven being mentioned in the Beating of the Bounds of 1777, the boundary between Henley and Bensington running through the building.
This is the dendrochronology report for 93-95 Bell Street. See also the full research report.
Oxford Dendrochronology Laboratory
The Tree-Ring Dating of the Chantry House
14-14a Friday Street has recently been dendro dated to 1589/90 and is the surviving part of an impressive timber-framed house on the south side of Friday Street, now forming a corner with the late-Victorian Queen Street. Until the 1890s it was part of the parish of Rotherfield Greys. It has a jettied gable with moulded joists and is closely studded with a long row of windows in the first-floor gable (some of them now blocked), all of which show that its builder was a wealthy man making a statement. Very eroded carvings indicate two letters or numerals on a main gable post. Title deeds connect this building with the Benwell family in the C18th, but there are other possible connections with the Benwells of Cowfields Farm, Rotherfield Peppard parish, which go further back.
16 Friday Street’s history is connected with Brakspear’s Brewery and that of No. 14. It was formerly called ‘The Plough’ and then the ‘Black Horse’. It is a tall 2 ½ storey brick building with cellar and adjoining passageway, which gave access to rear service buildings and still serves both Nos. 14 & 16. It retains evidence of timber framing as well as a rear stair turret, which still provides access from 1st to 2nd floor and an indication of an earlier building date than suggested in the Listing Entry (late C17th – 18th ). The tile-hung east gable, an unusual feature here, indicates that it was either larger originally or connected to a formerly adjoining terrace of buildings, and now covers a damaged gable wall.
9-11 Gravel Hill and 13 Gravel Hill. Nos 9 and 11 are now part of a modest Victorian terrace, but the façade hides a medieval timber-framed hall house of three bays with smoke-blackened roof timbers, which survive complete in the attic of No 11 with soot on the rafters, purlins, wind braces, and two crown-strut trusses. There are some indications that No. 7 was once part of the same group, but has been too much altered to ascertain this.
The Dendro Report of 2008 for 13 Gravel Hill provides the date of 1454 for the cross-wing at No. 13, and as it was clearly added to the open hall ( 9 – 11) it provides the evidence for giving the hall an approximate, earlier date.
No. 13 is a storeyed cross-wing which was added to the sidewall of No.11 in 1454 (dendro date). Its east side purlin and rafters rest on the timbers of the west gable of the hall. – The front wall has much-altered brickwork and fenestration, but the gable preserves a weathered crown strut and side purlin truss. The addition of two curved braces, give it the look of a crown post roof – a device harking back to the timber hungry, elegant medieval crown-post roofs. A simple, well-preserved crown strut truss makes up the rear gable. The tree felling date of 1454 and details of its physical close relationship with the pre-existing, adjoining hall proves that the latter is an earlier building, although the use of crown post struts in both indicates that their dates of construction are not very far apart.
The dendrochronolical report is attached.
For more information see the single report for 9, 11 & 13 Gravel Hill which includes a ground plan from Sales Particulars, a photograph and sketch of the south gable truss. There is no separate report, as no detailed recording was possible.
19 Gravel Hill, ‘Button Jugs’ is of late Georgian date, with walls of red brick with burnt headers patterns, a very shallow pitch slate roof, reeded sash windows with flat, rubbed brick arches, a 6-panelled door, set under a segmental, rubbed brick arch with radial fanlight. The interior retains many of its early C19th features, such as wall panelling, reeded door surrounds, moulded ceiling cornices and window shutters. There are also notes on its history and that of its site by John Crocker and by Ann Cottingham.
43-45 Gravel Hill is a substantial timber-framed house, originally of a two-bay lobby entry plan, now subdivided into two cottages, both extended at the back. It occupies a prominent position near the top of the upper Market Place, jutting forward into the road, its gable looking towards the town. In the 19th and early 20th century, it was a beerhouse, called the ‘Basket Makers Arms’ (see A. Cottingham ‘The Hostelries of Henley’). Its queens strut trusses, clasped purlin, large wind braces, wide, flat laid ceiling joists in bay II and two inglenook fireplaces suggest a building date of the mid C16th
20 – 22 Greys Road is a modest timber-framed house with a central stack, against which a former entrance door may have been located. The step down from the pavement indicates a possibly C17th building date. Possibly a lobby-entry house, but equally possible that it was a stable or similar outbuilding. Queen strut trusses, but poor quality wall frame timbers indicate later work than indicated by the trusses. It was very likely formerly weatherboarded. The Tithe Map and 1st O.S. map show that it was part of a large farmstead (demolished to make way for Greys Road car park). Interesting fireplaces, the eastern one with signs that it might have had a framed hood. The western one is built of narrow, ‘Tudor’ bricks.
Highlands Farmstead was overlooked during the Listing Process. It was located out of sight at the end of Highlands Lane, a typically substantial, historic Chiltern farmstead (first mentioned in 1401). It consisted of a timber-framed farmhouse of which one bay survived, with a tall brick & flint parlour wing extension. There was also a timber-framed barn of 3 bays with porch, probably of early to mid 18th date, and a brick and flint stable. More farm buildings existed as can be seen on the 1840 Tithe Map. The farmyard and all its buildings were demolished to make room for the suburban housing development of ‘Highlands Park’ in c. 2018. The site lies in the Chiltern AONB and part of it was designated a SAM (large number Palaeolithic flint finds in a former, braided river bed) and an SSSI.
English Heritage Listing update in 2011
25 Market Place has a plain red brick façade with C18th sashes, of which three are mock windows, inserted for symmetry, to accommodate the oak beams of a two bay timber-framed building. A long wing behind this retains its original roof trusses, one of them a very fine scissor brace truss, which has been dendro dated 1470/1. There is also a smoke bay with a queen stud truss, indicating possible commercial use of the building (it was the Rose & Crown PH in the C19th – see A. Cottingham ‘ The Hostelries of Henley’, also for details of ownership from 1585 onwards)
59 Market Place ‘The Malthouse’ is a double-pile brick building of two storeys and attic, plus cellar. It shares its tiled roof with No 61; both are listed together, although separate dwellings on long burgage plots. It has a double-height bay and 18th C. windows as well as keystones, shallow pilasters and plat bands, painted white. No measured survey, but description. Its history is associated with that of No. 57 and its large maltings, shown on the 1878 O.S. map. The small, timber-framed ‘malthouse’ ( or hop kiln?) in its back garden and separately described, is a remnant of this industry.
Rear of 59 Market Place, former malthouse is located in the back garden of No. 59 and was separately listed Gd.II in 2009 after recording by the O.B.R and HA&HG. It consists of 2 bays; flint lower walls, supporting timber framing with brick noggin. The frame of a former kiln funnel survives in one bay, very probably used for drying hops rather than malting barley, as there are no malt floors for the processing of the barley attached, an absolute essential for the malting process.
61 Market Place directly adjoins No. 59 on the west. Their different blue/grey burnt header use in the brick patterns show that they may not be one building campaign, although both share the shallow pilasters, keystones and plat bands. The inside was visited and described, but no measured drawings (but a copy of the plans of 1937 Sales Particulars), some photographs of interior F.P., stairs, and panelling.
Old Bell House, No 9 Northfield End is located at the northern entrance of the town where the Marlow and Oxford roads meet, forming a triangular open area, possibly a first market place at the gates of the site of the Royal Manor of Fillets. The house has a C18th frontage, which hides part of a timber-framed aisled hall (heavy smoke-blackened) at the back; only the north aisle survives. It was dendro dated to 1471/2. A vaulted cellar under the pavement appears to have been accessed from the street as well as from a later cellar under the house. A dated brick of 1733 with the initials T. O. refers to the ownership of Tomas Ovey and indicates that during this family’s time the dwelling house was much enlarged. – Tethering posts between The Old Bell House and Northfield House are further indicators that this building may have been used as an inn, a place to tie up one’s horse temporarily (the forerunner of our modern parking bay).
For more details see report on property.
A thatched, timber-framed farmhouse of two bays originally to which a further bay was added creating a lobby-entry plan. The entrance lobby abuts an enclosed, narrow, turned staircase, supported by the large brick stack. It became a P.H. and the adjacent farm buildings, called Bournes Farm, became separated probably in the 18th century. Good quality framing, chamfer stops, oak-panelled walls, 17th cox-combe door hinges to enclosed stair. The upper floors were not inspected.
It consisted of a timber-framed, weatherboarded barn of originally 3 bays with central threshing floor, to which a porch and a bay were added at each end. Its formerly thatched, half-hipped roof had been replaced with corrugated iron sheeting. The roof trusses consisted of queen strut trusses with clasped purlins. The wall framing had horizontal mid rails and struts, indicating earlier wattle & daub panels. A lean-to on the south side provided a milking parlour. – The building’s former use had ceased, replaced by C20th portal frame structures. It was in a poor state of neglect when we recorded it in 1983.
It was demolished in 1984, later making room for a car park and extensions to the Bottle & Glass P.H.
A late timber-framed, two-room cottage of one and a half storeys and a thatched, half-hipped roof. The timbers are of small scantling, square-framed with brick infill. Roof structure not accessible. A stack serves two fireplaces; one room with a copper adjoining the stack having probably served as a kitchen. Outside Privy. Very dilapidated when recorded in 1987. Subsequently Listed II, repaired and later extended.
Hampstead Farm is a large, isolated farmstead located above the Thames and main road between Henley and Reading. It has 4 large barns, stables, a granary, pigsties, two-fold yards; all located across a lane from the substantial brick-built farmhouse. An oxen byre (identified in the report as a stable; the only building recorded by the HA&HG with measured drawings) and the farmhouse are grouped near a large pond to the north side of the track. All barns are weatherboarded. Barn II has queen strut trusses; barns I and III have inner principals with the date 1776 on the tie beam of barn III. Barn IV appears to be the earliest of the barns; it is of 4 bays with mid-rail framing.
The most remarkable building on site is the brick-built oxen byre, identified by its wide, low doors. It has a fodder storage loft above, with a ladder accessed from the outside. Its trusses are of the interrupted tie-beam type with a gap along the east wall allowing for easy access for fodder storage and feeding.
A group of two barns is all that remains of a small farmstead shown on the Tithe Map of 1840. Both barns are timber-framed with aisles on one side, with queen strut trusses and clasped purlins. Barn I is the most interesting building as it is mostly built from re-used cruck timbers; the arcade posts are constructed from upside-down cruck blades. Cruck buildings are very rare in the Chilterns, but these must have come from a near-by cruck dwelling as transporting very substantial timbers any distance would have been very difficult and costly. The cruck timbers were dendro dated to 1454 by Dr Dan Miles in 1984 and the buildings were subsequently Listed Gd. II in 1985.
Manor Farm was a large farmstead near Bix Common and the main toll road from Henley to Dorchester. However, it was not the Manor Farm of the parish, the site of which remains unknown. It retains its farmhouse and major outbuildings i.e. a large six-bay barn, stabling, coach house, milking parlour, dairy, bullpen; all converted to commercial uses ( not recorded). The barn is timber-framed, with brick infill panels. It consists of a three-bay barn of 16th /17th date, queen strut roof trusses, and a 19th century, three-bay addition of much slighter framing and herringbone brick infill. Both parts have large porches on their north sides. The farmhouse was not recorded.
Detailed inventory and the will of 1697 of Henry Benwell – wealthy family associated with this farm and one other, also with properties in Henley.
A two-bay lobby entry plan farmhouse with a number of outbuildings, one of them a large barn ( not recorded as they had a separate equestrian use). It is now located in an isolated position at the T junction of two ancient trackways leading from Bix Common and the Assendon Road to St. James Church (a ruin) and St. Michael’s (an archaeological site mostly below two C20th estate cottages), and beyond to Bix Manor Farm, Pages Farm and what is now the Bix Nature Reserve. Although now a back water, this must have been a major through road from the Thames valley across the Chilterns to the Oxford Vale. The farmhouse is brick and flint built, dating to c. 1600 with a C 18th rear extension, doubling its size.
Grade II Listed, of mid-18th century date. It is a modest flint and brick-built farmhouse. Adjoining this is a timber-framed barn. The latter was being repaired (converted to residential ?) at the time of the HA&HG, Vernacular Architecture Section, visit in 1987. The three-bay barn has trusses of ‘inner curved principals of extraordinary shapes. In a simpler form, the roof type is known since the mid 18th in Oxfordshire. See drawing for details, for the two central trusses, and queen struts in the gables. The farmhouse had originally two-bays, one of them heated by a large fireplace with bread oven, with a lean-to extension at the back.
Eye and Dunsden Bishopsland Farm Barn. The 9-bay timber-framed barn is part of a large, historic farmstead, formerly in the ownership of the Bishops of Sarum. The earliest 5-bays have the date of 1576 carved in the tie beam at Truss D1 on the plan. This truss consists of central queen struts and raking queen posts. There are two porches and threshing floors.
For more information on the farmstead see Report on Bishopsland, Farmstead and House.
A very substantial brick L-shaped farmhouse, listed as 17th-19th century but retaining plenty of internal evidence of earlier timber framing, panelling, and a Tudor arch fireplace. The fireplaces are served by an external stack with three angled flues.
There are many outbuildings: the great barn ( see separate report), stables, three timber-framed granaries on staddle stones, a cart shed, a wash and general utility building.
A farmstead with brick & flint house and earlier framed wing (hs. not recorded) located on the edge of Dunsden village. A large farmyard, two barns, a granary, and shelter sheds. The barns were in the process of being converted to residential uses and our recording was superficial, mostly through photographs and loan of architect’s drawings. Some internal photographs, post-conversion, were also by the architects. Queen strut trusses in the 5-bay South Barn with evidence of re-used timbers – some may have come from a cruck building.
This is or was the home farm to Fawley Court and occupies a large site with numerous outbuildings on the west side of the Henley to Hambleden road (there are barns, stables, cottages, covered yard, a privy – see attached sketch plan); some since demolished or converted to residential. The date stone of 1737 I. Freeman is on the wall of an upstairs bedroom of the house. This is now called Fawley Court Lodge; it is brick-built, of double-pile plan, and the internal walls are lined with chalk blocks (there is a large chalk quarry near-by in Icehouse Lane).
The 8-bay timber-framed and weatherboarded barn has a 5-bay extension on its south side. Only the service buildings were photographically recorded and described. Some 19th & 20th Sales documents are included.
Originally one property called Round House Farm in the ownership of the Freemans of Fawley Court. The earliest part is a timber-framed cottage (Pink Cottage) of one bay with a large inglenook fireplace and formerly external stack on the south side, which it shares with the adjoining circular chalk block building (Roundhouse). This elegant 18th-century building (brick and flint base, brick cornice, tiled roof) was erected by John Freeman, confirmed by the date stone of 1730 and his initials. It seems to be very much part of the John Freeman building campaign of the period including Fawley Court Farm which has the date stone of 1737 and the same initials. The Roundhouse addition to the existing farmstead may have been intended as an eye-catcher, as well as providing additional accommodation.
Village farmstead. A group of two barns, stables, a shelter shed and granary adjoin the former farm house, now called Ivy Cottage (see separate report). A new, modest brick farm house was built in 1894. Timber framed, 4-bay barn with timber treshing floor and curved inner principal trusses indicates a mid-18th century date. Detailed research into the occupancy by the Hussey and Prince families by local descendant Harold Hussey of Pheasants Hill Farm, Hambleden; photographs of family members, farm waggon and 1940s tractor.
Very likely the home farm of the now vanished medieval manor house. The double aisled, 6-bay barn is the largest in the valley and probably served as a manorial tithe barn. It is timber-framed of queen strut and clasped purlin construction, but with brick and flint work forming the aisled dwarf and gable end walls. The roof is half-hipped and tiled. It has two large porches on the south and north sides. There are several stables around the farmyard (not recorded in detail).
The farmhouse is brick-built, of modest size, but now much extended; it also includes the fabric of a former brick & flint barn on its north side (still clearly indicated by its large blocked central wagon entrance and blocked ventilation slits). The earliest part of the house is of lobby entry plan, indicated by its blocked entrance door into the lobby and former winder stair at the back of the large central stack.
This is the original farmhouse to the adjoining Fingest Farm (see separate report). A timber-framed house of c. 1600 date, with queen struts and clasped purlin trusses. It is brick fronted on the street elevation only, of a three-bay plan with later rear extension, forming a T-shape. The latter was probably added in the 17th century as a kitchen, strongly indicated by the large range and double gable end stacks. Much historical information was added by former tenant farmers and their descendants.
Colstrope Farm is now the principal farmstead of this small hamlet in the middle of the Hambleden valley, whose name goes back to Scandinavian or Germanic settlers. The C18th, double-pile brick farmhouse forms one side of a large fold yard with 3 barns, cowsheds, a bullpen and stables. Barn II has the date 1739 scribed on the post adjoining the threshing floor. The materials used are brick & flint and weatherboarding, the trusses have queen struts and clasped purlins.
An interesting feature of the house is an external stair turret, which provides direct access to the loft from the ground floor back kitchen (itself a later extension), without there being any access to the main body of the house from it – so not the traditional back stairs as seen in many 18th/19th century houses. The dwelling house is served by the principal stairs within it and accessed by its central passageway. Was the direct access to the loft used for important storage, i.e. seed corn? Or designated for separate male farmhands’ accommodation?
Located high above the Hambleden Valley and consists of the main farm house, a medieval aisled barn, a cottage ( see separate report for Tudor Cottage), a further barn and stables. Formerly in the ownership of Dame Lady Periam and then Balliol College, it is well documented (see in-depth research by Penelope Olsen for Palmer family – interpretation of buildings, however, is questionable). The brick and flint walled, aisled, timber-framed, and fully hipped barn consists of five bays with two porches. It has been dendro dated to 1443 with crown strut trusses. It is the earliest building. on the site.
The jettied timber-framed farmhouse has a dendro date of 1494, but this is very likely just the surviving chamber wing to an earlier hall house, which was replaced by a tall brick & flint chamber block with newel staircase and large central stack creating a lobby entrance plan between the two parts of the house. Each room has fireplaces, some with a Tudor arch surround, also many original cross-shaped ovolo moulded window. A building date for this part of the house of c 1600 is suggested turning the medieval homestead into a comfortable, one may say luxurious, house.
Howe Farm is an isolated farmstead located on the western slopes of the Hambleden valley. It was a private house when the only surviving barn was recorded in 1984, but earlier sales documents of 1882 and the 1845 Tithe Map show that it was a typically isolated, but substantial, Chiltern farmstead of 147 acres and with many outbuildings. The recorded barn is of three bays, with a large porch, all now weatherboarded. Its horizontal timbers have grooves and holes for former wattle staves showing that the walls formerly consisted of wattle & daub panels.
Little Colstrope Farm has an C18th double-pile, brick-built farmhouse, a former farmyard with barns and stables on the west side, but ceased to be a working farm by c. 1900. All farm buildings have since been converted to residential use. Barn I has an abundance of ‘wavy’ scantling timbers, evidence of a shortage of good scantling timbers. The trusses next to the former threshing floor have Inner Curved Principals, a typical C18th/19th device to provide headroom for the storing of sheaves. The other trusses have queen strut roofs with clasped purlins. The histories of ownership of Colstrope Farm and Little Colstrope are linked through the Deane family.
Mill End Farm retains all the features of a traditional 18th-century farmstead with a brick built, M-shaped brick farmhouse and adjacent large farmyard. This still contains all the farm buildings needed for mixed use such as cattle, horses, and cereal growing; i.e. two large barns, a cow house, calf shed, shelter shed, stable, and granary. A former dairy use in the farmhouse has been identified. The stable has Inner Curved Principal trusses and a feeding gap to supply the feeding troughs below. The stable also has windows of iron frame & mullions with an internal horizontally sliding shutter. Barn II retains driving shafts, suspended from the tie-beams, to run former machinery. The outbuildings are mainly weatherboarded but there are also walls of brick & flint and chalk blocks; i.e. the calf shed, adding good insulation.
Pheasant’s Hill Farm is part of a small hamlet, located c. 1 mile north of Hambleden village. The steading consists of a brick-built and originally two-bay farmhouse with cellar and external well. It has been extended and is now double-pile. There are two timber-framed and weatherboarded barns, one converted for cow accommodation, a further cow house, a stable, cart shed, and granary. Barn I has queen strut trusses and clasped purlins; barn II has inner principals allowing for head height for storing the harvest (a roof truss type known locally from the mid C18th ) but the machine-cut softwood timbers here indicate a C19th date.
Yewden Farm was the home farm to Yewden Manor and its outbuildings (granary, stable) adjoin the Manor House directly on the north. The brick-built farmhouse occupies the adjoining site with three timber-framed barns and a large covered yard, again to its north. The timber-framed with brick infill granary on its staddle stones is a particularly attractive, although late, example of its type. One can follow the gradual growth and development of the farmstead from south to north ending with the date of 1884 and initials of the new owner WHS in the brickwork at the entrance to the covered yard. All buildings have now been converted to residential.
Harpsden Court was the home of the lords of the Manor of Harpsden since Domesday and probably earlier, judging by its Anglo-Saxon name. This survey of the buildings relies on the 1586 estate map by John Blagrave of Reading, commissioned by Humfrey Forster. The birds-eye view shows the existing front range, dendro dated to 1567/68, located between three courtyards with numerous outbuildings. These no longer exist. The house itself has been extended with an additional C18th kitchen wing (1722) on the west side and a further rear wing, of an early C19th date at the rear/south side.
During extensive recording work by members of the Henley Archaeological & Historical Group and the Oxfordshire Buildings Record, an earlier tower type structure was discovered, having been retained under the 1567 Tudor roof. All visible walls, mostly hidden behind square oak paneling, are of rubble stone, flint, some ashlar, and some corner tiles construction. A pointed arch stone window survives in the east wall at first floor level of the now enclosed tower structure, indicating a late 12th/13th century building date for this part . – The Strawberry Hill fenestration, much of it with false windows adding grandeur to the main façade, and a porch of c. 1900, were the last alterations to its principal elevation.
The barn is the only remaining building of the former home farm of Harpsden Court and stands next to the church. It is weatherboarded, of three bays with a brick stable extension on the west side. Both are now converted to residential. The most interesting feature of the barn is the carved initials and dates of the owners, Henry and Elizabeth Hall ( H, H16 & E89), on the doorposts and lintel. The same, plus a tulip head, are repeated on the tie beam adjoining the threshing floor. The roof structure is of the queen strut and clasped purlin type
Hunts Farm, Hunts Green, Harpsden is the only surviving farmstead of the three shown on the 1586 Blagrave Estate Map. The core of the farmhouse is a three-bay cruck hall house, smoke-blackened with its original cruck trusses and low roof only surviving well at the back. A later timber-framed extension of two bays, probably of early C18th date, was added on the east side. The front brick and flint wall probably dates from the time when the house was converted into two cottages in the early/mid C19th.
The timber-framed, weatherboarded, five-bay barn on the east side of the courtyard has roof trusses of the ‘inner curved principals’ type of which other examples are known locally (see Lower Bolney Farm 1750 date on tie beam). The barn is listed as dating to the C17th or earlier, as it has evidence of original wattle & daub infill panels. A shelter shed is attached to its south-bay forming an L-shape with the barn. A C19th brick stable, later used as a dairy, stands on the north side of the yard.
The house and barn were Listed Gd II following the detailed recording of the farmstead and research into its history by the HA&HG based on the 1586 map.
Hunts Green Barn is the only building surviving of the middle farm of this three-farmstead hamlet recorded by Blagrave in 1586. It has three bays with a central threshing floor and large barn doors. A C19th stable is attached on the east side. The trusses have queen struts from ties to collars and clasped purlins. There is evidence that it had wattle & daub infill panels before this was replaced with weatherboarding. Listed Gd II in 1990 following the survey and research by HA&HG.
Lucy’s Farm is shown on the 1586 Blagrave Map of the Harpsden Court Estate as a farmstead in the valley bottom, not far from the manor house and church. It was still in existence on the Tithe Map of 1842, but now only one barn survives, timber-framed and weatherboarded, however in a rather poor condition, much repaired and partly rebuilt. Much historical evidence in the form of wills and inventories of the tenant farmers (the Symons and Lucies) exists and illustrate this once substantial and well to do holding from the 16th century onwards.
Old Place, alias Bottom House Farm, Harpsden is shown on the 1586 Blagrave Map of the Harpsden Court Estate. It is located at the western end of the Harpsden Valley, one of the several large farmsteads of this typically dispersed Chiltern parish. The farmhouse is shown as an L-shape, reflecting very much the still existing earliest timber-framed building on this site. This is now dwarfed by several large, mock-Tudor extensions. The farm buildings still shown on the 1842 Tithe map have disappeared, replaced with mock Tudor barns. – The earliest part of the house is a two-bay timber-framed hall, with a large stack separating it from its first extension which is in the form of a small storeyed east wing.
Perseverance Cottage, Harpsden is located above the valley by the side of the road which climbs up Chalk Hill, also known as Perseverance Hill. Originally of 2 bays with a large external brick stack, thatched and of small scantling timbers, brick & flint underbuilt up to first-floor level; probably a 17th-century smallholder’s cottage built on the road margins. A timber-framed extension on the west side was added under a hipped roof, possibly in the late C18th or early C19th, probably with re-used timbers and lacking traditional carpentry skills – but fitting the label of picturesque!
Upper House Farm consists of a brick farmhouse, with a 16th-century timber-framed, three-bay core. This has queen strut trusses and clasped
purlins. There is a three-bay timber-framed & weather-boarded barn and also a timber-framed granary on staddle stones on the east side. A 19th century former stable closes the large farmyard on the west. Part of this farmstead is shown on the 1586 Harpsden Court Estate map. It was a typical dispersed Chiltern farmstead consisting of 116 acres in the tenure of W. Pearman (see Pearman tenure history for more details).
Rocky Lane Farm was in the ownership of the Greys Court Estate until its sale in 1922. It consisted of an C18th brick and flint farmhouse with gable end chimney stacks and timber mullion windows and a decorative Victorian porch (see photograph in 1922 Sales Catalogue). There is also a five-bay barn, weatherboarded with inner principals and porch.
The change in ownership brought about gentrification of the property with the introduction of re-used stone mullion windows, leaded lights, a semi-circular arch front door surround, and various other re-used stone Tudor arch doorways and features, often well weathered and very likely originating from the demolition site of a 16th-century house.
This is a very substantial Chiltern Farm with a Georgian farmhouse (including an earlier core ) two substantial timber-framed barns, joined by a link, two sets of stables, bullpen, pig styes, shelter shed, milking parlour and granary, a large former farmyard – now a sunken garden. Only the barns and granary were recorded in detail. Photo 1982
Located in Colmore Lane, on the edge of Kingwood Common. It is of two bays, with later rear outshut. It was built with good quality scantling timbers and good detailing, such as queen strut trusses set on a cambered tie-beam, as well as chamfer stops in the ground floor spine beams. Sooting is present on some rafters, but maybe this is from the chimney rather than proving that this was an early hall house. Conclusion: a modest farmhouse of good quality, of possible mid 16th century date, which survived as a cottage.
Home Farm in Middle Assendon consists of a traditional farmhouse ( brick & flint, of lobby entry plan), an L-shaped, weatherboarded barn ( Barns I and II on drawings, of three bays each) and stables, grouped around the fold yard. There is also a cart shed and yard pump. The 1725 Stonor Estate map shows a house and a simple barn ( barn I), confirming that there were two building phases, forming an L-shape; there is also the addition of a large porch, needed for an increase in processing more cereals. The brick and flint farmhouse was extended and doubled in size by a 19th century north range with a new front door at what used to be the back, opening into the garden rather than into the fold yard – a clear sign of improved living standards as well as status.
Hollandridge Farm, Pishill with Stonor, is located high up in the Chilterns alongside an ancient ridgeway spur, called Knightsbridge Lane. It was formerly part of the Stonor Estate (see 1725 map). Two good size dew ponds, fed possibly by a spring, supply the essential water for the documented livestock, i.e. cows, sheep, horses, and pigs (see Inventories of Nicholas Smythe of 1628 and Nicholas Cowdrey of 1721). The mainly brick-built farmhouse dates to c 1800, with signs of an earlier core. Two timber-framed barns of 3 and 5 bays respectively, the latter has an outshut, porch, and central threshing floor; 6-bay timber-framed stable and other service buildings are grouped around the large farmyard.
Remenham Farm is located on the east bank of the Thames in Berkshire. It consists of a C18th double-pile brick farmhouse with later additions, two large barns, and a C19th covered yard and tractor shed, added by the new owners W H Smith (1889 date stone). All have been converted to residential and commercial uses. A former timber-framed granary was removed to a position close to the river, away from the farmyard complex; in 2007 it was vandalized and burned down. The barn to the south of the present farmyard complex appears to be the only survivor, apart from the farmhouse, of the earlier farmstead shown on the 1841 Tithe Map. The barn is of three bays with side aisle, timber-framed with queen strut trusses, and clasped purlins. Interestingly it has an extension on its east side built of cob; a building material not usually found here. – The barn north-east of the covered yard was not investigated as it had been converted to residential, and in separate ownership.
An isolated typical Chiltern farmstead, dating from c. 1500 with a timber-framed farmhouse, probably starting as a small hall house, with timber-framed wings added over the next two centuries. Adjacent to the north and north/west are two large timber-framed barns with other service buildings of various dates, mostly brick-built, such as stables, cowsheds, a bullpen, and shelter sheds around the farmyard.
This report was been commissioned by Sam and Sue Samuels, owners of Cowfields Farmhouse to inform applications for planning permission and listed building consent.
PLEASE ALSO REFER TO HA&HG REPORT 39 ON COWFIELDS BY RUTH GIBSON IN 1986
Formerly part of the Greys Court Estate. Timber framed farmhouse with decorative brick & flint infill panels, dendro dated to 1567 (contemporary with major building campaign by Francis Knollys at Greys Court). 17th-century extension on the south side forming a T shaped plan. There are two barns, both adjoining the former farmyard. Both are weatherboarded; barn II with flint & brickwork and ventilation slits in its gables. Barn I has a side aisle and queen post trusses; Barn II also has queen posts, slightly curved, no collars. Both were in a poor state of repairs and not all parts were accessible for recording in 1984.
Formerly part of the Greys Court estate, built in the 18th century, at the time of the Stapleton ownership. A very substantial farmstead with brick Georgian farmhouse (not recorded) two timber-framed barns with lean-tos, stables brick/flint and timber-framed, a timber-framed granary on staddle stones, a brick dairy and large combination building with fold yards. The major barn is of five bays, with a central wooden thrashing floor, queen struts supporting collar trusses. The adjoining barn is of three bays with raking queen struts. Both barns have porches and opposing exit doors as well as a lean-to. Barn two preserves a manger and manure passage under its lean-to.
An impressive 5 bay barn, brick and flint with ventilation slots. The trusses are of the Inner Curved Principal type, much used during the 19th century, but also from mid 18th on in our area. Timber-framed milking parlour and stable, the latter also has Inner Curved Principals, a feeding gap and two hoist doors; possibly pre-dates barn, photographs only. Victorian farmhouse – not recorded.
Formerly known as Sadgrove Farm. Only the barn & stables were recorded (The farmhouse has a brick façade with timber framing visible in the gable. The barn is brick-built with attractive diaper work brick in the gables. Sawn timbers were used in the roof structure and trusses of the inner-principal type. The stable/shed structure consists of 4 bays and is now rather dilapidated; it probably pre-dates the large barn. Only the ground plan and one end gable wall of this building was measured and recorded – see drawings
This is a timber-framed, two-bay lobby entry house with a central stack of probably early-mid C17th date, to which a further timber-framed, unheated bay was added on the south side; further extensions were added over time both to the north (with chimney) and at the back. It has a thatched, long straw roof. Its framing is of slight timbers; its trusses are of the queen strut type. It is located on the edge of Shepherd’s Green common; an area where also other small-holders cottages are found.
A house of two parts; the smaller one retains a two-bay lobby entry plan with an archway cut through the 4-flue brick stack at ground floor level. It is of good quality scantling timber framing with jowl posts, curved wall braces and chamfer stops in spine beams. A building date of c.1600 is estimated for this build. The larger part is brick-built, of double pile with hipped roof and sash windows with 8 over 8 thick glazing bars and exposed sash boxes, all indicating a building date of the mid to late 18th century.
Lower Bolney Farm survives in a very fragmented form. When recorded in 1983 it consisted of two timber-framed barns, a range of cowsheds, stables, a shelter shed, a small labourer’s bothy and a modest brick-built Victorian farmhouse, arranged around a large courtyard. Little of this is now left. The surviving historic barn (Barn I of the survey), on the west side of the yard, consists of five bays with a central threshing floor, opposing doors, a lean-to side aisle and porch on its west side. Its central truss carries the date and initials A H 1750 T W. All trusses have clasped purlins and are of the ‘Inner Curved Principals’ type, which allows uninterrupted access at the upper level for stacking the harvest. Barn II, demolished in c.1988 ( ‘having been blown down’) not long after being recorded, was of 5 bays, central barn doors to the threshing floor, trusses with raking queen struts, 2 sets of purlins and continuous knife-cut carpenter’s marks.
Eyot House was built in 1902 for Reginal Blunt of the De Morgan Pottery. Many internal features such as chimneypieces with Delft and De Morgan tiles, original joinery including ledged doors, dresser, cupboard, and staircase. Most impressive is a large panel of De Morgan tiles in rear loggia depicting a classical scene with sailing ships and townscape.
A Grade II LB. Late C16th house, L-shaped. Timber-framed with brick infill. The western bay is two rooms deep. The eastern bay has a raised gable, probably added to create a symmetrical façade. There is a central 3 m wide bay creating a lobby entry plan. A three flue brick stack sits across this bay, but allowing central access through its centre to the back of the house ( see g.f. plan drawing) making this a most unusual arrangement.