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Church House

A Grade II* Listed Building in South Tawton, Devon

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Latitude: 50.734 / 50°44'2"N

Longitude: -3.9103 / 3°54'37"W

OS Eastings: 265288

OS Northings: 94448

OS Grid: SX652944

Mapcode National: GBR Q7.839C

Mapcode Global: FRA 27P4.JG7

Plus Code: 9C2RP3MQ+HV

Entry Name: Church House

Listing Date: 22 February 1967

Grade: II*

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1106005

English Heritage Legacy ID: 95025

Location: South Tawton, West Devon, Devon, EX20

County: Devon

District: West Devon

Civil Parish: South Tawton

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: South Tawton St Andrew

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

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4/225 Church House

Church house, still used as parish rooms. Late C15 - early C16, much altered in the
mid C16. Large blocks of coursed granite ashlar. Patched here and there with
granite stone rubble; granite stacks with granite ashlar chimneyshafts; thatch
Plan and development: the building is built down a gentle hillslope and faces
south-east backing onto and terraced into the churchyard. The mid C16 church house
had a 3-room plan but now the centre and left (south-western) room have been knocked
together. Left end gable-end stack and an axial stack between the other rooms
serves back-to-back fireplaces. Lobby entrance right of centre onto the side of the
stack. External first floor access. A blocked disturbance in the left end wall
behind the stack might represent the site of a former internal stair there.
Originally the house was open to the roof, heated by an open hearth fire and any
internal partitions were low screens. It was floored in the mid C16 when the
fireplaces were inserted and is therefore now 2 storeys.
Exterior: irregular 3-window front of C20 casements containing rectangular panes of
leaded glass. Those on the ground floor occupy C16 embrasures with chamfered
granite reveals, the centre one with the headpiece of a 2-light window with trefoil-
headed lights. The main front doorway is right of centre and is probably original;
a granite'2-centred arch with chamfered surround and contains an ancient studded oak
plank door. Secondary ground floor doorway containing a C20 door left of centre.
The main front doorway is flanked by the double flight of external lateral granite
steps rising to the main first floor doorway; a granite Tudor arch containing a C20
door. To right a secondary first floor doorway. The steps have plain C19 iron
rails. In fact the ground floor doorways also have steps from the road; these set
with upended cobbles with granite kerbs. The roof is gable-ended. The right
(north-eastern) gable end contains a good C16 first floor window; square-headed 3-
light granite-mullioned window with Perpendicular tracery and a hoodmould.
Interior is largely mid C16. Of the 3 fireplaces only the one for the centre room
is exposed; it is granite ashlar with a plain soffit-chamfered oak lintel. The
left end one, though blocked, is larger than the others. All ground floor
crossbeams are of large scantling with plain soffit chamfers. There is no sign of
the partition between centre and left rooms although Copeland reports an oak plank-
and-muntin screen containing a shoulder-headed doorway. First floor is open to the
roof. The roof structure is now interrupted by the axial stack but was formerly a
continuous 5-bay roof true cruck trusses. The whole of this roof structure is
smoke-blackened from the original open hearth fire.
Source: G W Copeland. Devonshire Church Houses, Part 1. Trans. Devon. Assoc. 92
(1960), p.130.

Listing NGR: SX6528994451

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