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Latitude: 50.8165 / 50°48'59"N
Longitude: -3.3239 / 3°19'25"W
OS Eastings: 306834
OS Northings: 102716
OS Grid: ST068027
Mapcode National: GBR LQ.XZQJ
Mapcode Global: FRA 36XY.4X1
Entry Name: Middle Clyst William Farmhouse
Listing Date: 22 February 1955
Source: Historic England
Source ID: 1098127
English Heritage Legacy ID: 86883
Location: Plymtree, East Devon, Devon, EX15
Civil Parish: Plymtree
Traditional County: Devon
Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon
Church of England Parish: Plymtree St John the Baptist
Church of England Diocese: Exeter
ST 00 SE
3/127 Middle Clyst William Farmhouse
Farmhouse. Mid - late C15 with major C16 and C17 improvements, C19 extension.
Plastered cob on stone rubble footings; stone rubble stacks, one built within an
earlier timber-framed smoke bay, topped with C19 and C20 brick; thatch roof.
Plan and development: 5-room-and-through-passage plan house facing south-west. At
the left (north-west) end is the kitchen with a gable-end stack, its oven housing
projects from the end. Next to it is an unheated room, now the dining room but
probably of some service use formerly such as dairy, buttery, or pantry. Then there
is the passage and right of it is the large former hall which has a projecting front
lateral stack. At the upper end of the hall is an inner room parlour which was
formerly the end room and had an end stack (now disused). The room at the right end
is a C19 extension. It was built as cider cellar but has now been brought into
This is a house with a long and compelx structural history. The original hall house
was not much smaller than the present one (excluding the C19 extension). There was
a chamber over the inner room from the beginning. The rest of the house was open to
the roof, divided by low partition screens and was heated by an open hearth fire.
At an early stage it seems that the top at least of the left end truss was filled to
create some kind of smoke bay this end. This may be related to the flooring over
the rest of the lower end (the service room) before building a full height crosswall
on the lower side of the passage. The hall open hearth fire was still in operation
at this time. In the mid or late C16 the hall stack was inserted and the hall was
floored over in the early or mid C17. Some time in the C16 the kitchen end smoke
bay was replaced by a timber-framed stack and, probably in the C18, a stone stack
was built inside the framed one. In the mid - late C17 the inner room was rebuilt
and enlarged as a parlour with a new stack.
Exterior: 7-window front of mostly C19 and C20 casements with glazing bars the
right end windows (to the former cider cellar) are C20 and contain rectangular panes
of leaded glass. The passage front doorway is left of centre alongside the hall
stack and it contains an old studded plank door behind a C20 gabled porch. The roof
is half-hipped to right and gable-ended to left. For the most part the rear windows
are similar to those on the front except for the inner room parlour which has a C17
oak window with moulded mullions.
Interior is very good: both sides of the passage are lined with close-studded
crosswalls, possibly mid C16 or thereabouts in date. The ceiling of tne dining
room/former service room is probably very early and is made up of a series of axial
large scantling joists; for some reason they stop short of the passage partition and
rest there on the headbeam of an original low partition screen. The kitchen too is
floored by plain axial joists. The fireplace here is stone rubble, heavily patched
with C19 brick, and has a plain oak lintel. At first floor level the extensive
remains of the C16 timber-framed stack can be seen. The hall is a large room and it
has a large fireplace; the Beerstone ashlar jambs have panelled cheeks, it has an
oak lintel and moulded surround. The C17 crossbeams here are chamfered with scroll
stops. The inner room parlour crossbeam is richly-moulded with bar runout stops.
The fireplace here has been destroyed.
The late medieval roof is a very good specimen and survives essentially intact from
the closed truss at the upper end of the hall to the kitchen end. It is 5 bays
carried on large scantling side-pegged jointed cruck trusses with single sets of
curving windbraces (many of which still survive). Each truss has a saddle apex
(Alcock's apex type C). The ridge is square set over the service end and diagonally
set over the hall and passage. The 2 trusses over the hall have cambered collars
and chamfered arch braces and there is evidence of a smoke louvre here. The whole
of this roof structure (except for the inner room side of closed truss) is heavily
smoke-blackened from the original open hearth fire. The roof is particularly well-
preserved over the hall and here even the sooted late medieval thatch remains. The
secondary crosswall over tne lower side of the passage is smoke-blackened on the
hall side only. The space above the collar of the left end stack is filled with
heavily sooted wattling from the smoke bay there. The parlour roof is also carried
on a side-pegged jointed cruck but this is a C17 example; it is clean.
Middle Clyst William is not only attractive but also a well-preserved multi-phase
Devon farmhouse. It is notabe for its fine late medieval roof.
Listing NGR: ST0683402716
This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.
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