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Latitude: 50.9689 / 50°58'8"N
Longitude: -3.9711 / 3°58'15"W
OS Eastings: 261694
OS Northings: 120683
OS Grid: SS616206
Mapcode National: GBR KV.M9TL
Mapcode Global: FRA 26KK.4QR
Plus Code: 9C2RX29H+HH
Entry Name: Southwood Farmhouse and Garden Walls Adjoining to Front
Listing Date: 16 February 1989
Source: Historic England
Source ID: 1146934
English Heritage Legacy ID: 91700
Location: High Bickington, Torridge, Devon, EX37
Civil Parish: High Bickington
Traditional County: Devon
Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon
Church of England Parish: High Bickington
Church of England Diocese: Exeter
SS 62 SW
5/85 Southwood Farmhouse and garden
- walls adjoining to front
Farmhouse and adjoining garden walls. Late C15 or early C16 house, altered and
enlarged probably in the early to mid C17, and altered in the late C17 to early C18.
Minor mid to late C19 and late C20 altertions. Rendered cob on stone rubble plinth,
with gable ended C20 thatched (reed) roof. Rear wing with stone rubble to ground
floor, rendered cob to first floor and gable-ended Welsh-slate roof. Stone lateral
stack to the front with C19 brick top, and stone end stacks to right and rear wing.
Stone rubble garden walls.
Plan and development: Three-room an through-passage plan, facing farmyard to north-
west (ground falls to right). The late-Medieval house consisted of a hall and
through passage, both open to the roof, unheated service room to right with first-
floor over, and unheated inner room to left, also with a first floor. Full-height
cob partition wall between hall and inner room, probable similar wall between passage
and service rebuilt in the C19. The late Medieval house probably included a
staircase in the rear of the hall giving access to the first floor over the service
end (see recess in right-hand corner). The early C17 alterations included the
insertion of a large external lateral stack to the front wall of the hall and an
external end stack to the service room at the right, and the addition of a one-roomed
plan 2-storey wing projecting at the rear of the hall, with an external end stack and
a rear doorway (since blocked). The eaves were raised in the C17 also and a new roof
built over the old one, and the Medieval roof over the hall appears to have been
totally rebuilt. The first floor probably was not inserted in the hall until the
late C17 or early C18. Mid to late C19 alterations included the rebuilding of the
wall (stone rubble up to first-floor and stud partition above) between the passage
and former service room, creating a narrower passage (see gap behind half beam in
right-hand ground-floor room), and probably also the insertion of the staircase to
the rear of the passage. Former passage rear doorway when staircase was inserted and
new doorway was inserted in the rear wall of the right-hand room (former service
room), which probably became the kitchen in the mid to late C19. Further C19
alterations probably included the addition of the front porch and the conversion of
the former inner room into a dairy. C19 low walls enclosing the small front garden.
Part of the adjoining mid to late C19 farmbuildings (q.v.), probably a former stable,
was converted into domestic accommodation (present kitchen) in the late C20, with
inserted windows. Two storeys.
Exterior: Central large external lateral square stack to front has slated offsets to
sides and offset to later brick shaft. Almost symmetrical fenestration to front,
with 4 windows to first floor and 3 to ground floor; mid to late C19 two- and 3-light
(hall window) wooden casements (some C20 replacements) with wooden lintels. Passage
doorway to right of stack has C19 plank door with 3 glazed lights, C19 chamfered
pegged wooden frame and C19 thatched - roof gabled stone porch. Left-hand gable end
has first-floor C19 two-light wooden casement to left with wooden lintel and central
projecting stone letters to high plinth. Pair of first-floor windows and ground-
floor window with, wooden lintel, to rear of right-hand end of house. C19 doorway to
right of ground-floor window with plank door, chamfered wooden frame and wooden
lintel. Blocked former passage rear doorway (see wooden lintel), with inserted
window. Blocked ground-floor window to right, at rear of inner room (see straight
joints). Gable end of rear wing has first floor 3-light wooden casement to left of
stack, with wooden lintel, and ground-floor 2-light wooden casement to right of
stack, with wooden lintel, formerly doorway (see jambs continuing to ground level
inside). Left-hand return front with first-floor 3-light wooden casement and ground-
floor 2-light wooden casements. Low garden walls adjoining to front, with gateway to
front and right-hand side.
Interior: Hall has probably late C17 or early C18 ceiling with longitudinal joists
(possibly formerly plastered). C17 fireplace with stone jambs (opening reduced in
width at a later date) and high chamfered wooden lintel. Front window with seat.
Square recess in right-hand rear corner of hall, evidence of possible former
staircase. Entrance lobby has C19 matchboarded dado and C20 doors to left - and
right-hand rooms. C19 staircase. Right-hand ground-floor room (former service room,
latterly kitchen) has 2 chamfered cross beams with stepped stops, and plain joists.
Left-hand beam is a half-beam, formerly against cob cross wall before it was rebuilt
and moved in the C19 (see gap between beam and passage side-wall). C17 open stone
fireplace to right (wooden lintel since removed). Evidence of former passage rear
doorway in space beneath stairs (see jambs of inserted window continuing to floor
level). Former inner room (latterly dairy) to left of hall has cambered chamfered
spine beam with straight cut stops, quarry tile floor and low slate shelves on brick
piers. Doorway between hall and ground-floor room of rear wing has C17 pegged
cranked-arched wooden frame, with beaded square-headed outer surround on the hall
side. Ground-floor room of rear wing has cambered chamfered C17 cross beams with
stepped stops and later adze marks (probably to take later plaster, since removed).
C17 fireplace to rear with stone jambs (opening later reduced in width) and chamfered
wooden lintel with ogee stops. Window seat in side wall.
Substantial remains of late - Medieval roof, over left-hand (inner room) end with
purlins and diagonally-set ridge piece and over right-hand (service room) end with
pairs of purlins and pegged rafters (ridge-piece removed, see socket in right-hand
end wall). No smoke blackening on roofs over former service room and inner room.
Full-height cob wall between hall and inner room, rising into attic, smoke blackened
on hall side. Smoke-blackened post embedded in wall, with fork at top to take
diagonally-set ridge-piece of former late-Medieval roof over hall (removed during the
C17 reroofing). Top of partition wall raised slightly as part of the C17 reroofing
(see lighter-coloured cob on top of wall). Top of C19 lath and plaster partition
between bedroom over hall and former service end visible in roof-space, plastered on
right-hand side. C17 roof over remains of Medieval roof with 3 trusses consisting of
straight principals with mortice and tenoned apices and pegged lap-jointed collars,
and diagonally-set ridge-piece. C17 rafters mostly removed during late C20 reroofing
but some have been reused as purlins.
The farmhouse forms part of a farmstead group, also including an 1-plan range of
adjoining farmbuildings and a barn with an adjoining horse-engine house (q.q.v.).
Listing NGR: SS6169420683
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