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Latitude: 50.6286 / 50°37'43"N
Longitude: -4.5399 / 4°32'23"W
OS Eastings: 220458
OS Northings: 84070
OS Grid: SX204840
Mapcode National: GBR NB.9PPR
Mapcode Global: FRA 17CD.YZ2
Entry Name: Basil Manor
Listing Date: 23 November 1988
Source: Historic England
Source ID: 1159225
English Heritage Legacy ID: 68382
Location: St. Clether, Cornwall, PL15
Civil Parish: St. Clether
Traditional County: Cornwall
Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall
Church of England Parish: St Clether
Church of England Diocese: Truro
SX 28 SW
4/171 Basil Manor
- (formerly listed as
Lower Basil Farmhouse)
Large house. Probably early C16, remodelled and extended in late C16 and in C17 and
restored and partly rebuilt in circa 1870s-1880s by J.P. St Aubyn. Stone rubble and
roughly coursed and dressed stone, part with moulded granite plinth. Snecked stone
to C19 rebuilding. Scantle slate roofs with gable ends. Rebuilt circa C17 stone
ashlar and granite axial and end stacks.
Plan: Courtyard plan: front range with gatehouse which has a wide passage directly
opposite the main entrance to the house. The main range on west has what was
originally probably a through passage which has been blocked to rear; thin reset
partition on the higher right hand side and a thick wall containing a flue on the
lower side. The hall to right is heated by a rear lateral stack, divided from the
small unheated inner room beyond by a thick cross wall which continues up to the
ceiling of the first floor. There is a one-room plan circa C17 wing to front of the
inner room which is heated by an end stack and a second probably C17 wing to the rear
of the inner room, heated by a side lateral stack. A third circa C17 wing was added
to the end of the right of the inner room. This wing now contains a reset staircase
although the position of the mullion window in the end wall would suggest that this
wing was intended as a stair wing: however this would be an unusual position for a
Below the passage to left the partitions have been altered and the exact arrangement
is uncertain. There are two rooms on the lower side and then a wing of two room plan
which extends to front left, the two rooms sharing a central axial stack. There is a
C19 semi-circular stair turret which projects into the courtyard. This turret and
the front wall (facing the courtyard) was rebuilt or refaced by J.P. St Aubyn in
circa 1870s-1880s. However, the rear wall facing the garden is much earlier although
there are several straight joints. This wing therefore probably has C17 origins.
Continuing from this wing, across the front is the gatehouse range which has a wide
passage to right of centre and several other ground floor entrances on the front and
two from within the passage. There is a straight flight stone stair to the left of
the passage up to the first floor.
The house was partly refenestrated and partly re-roofed by J.P. St Aubyn and several
of the partitions were altered both in the late C19 and in the C20. However, the
house does appear to have Medieval origins with two circa early C16 trusses surviving
over the lower end of the hall; whilst the truss over the passage partition appears
fairly clean the next truss on the higher side is smoke-blackened in patches
indicating that the hall was probably open to the roof and heated by an open hearth.
The roof structure over the higher side of the hall, over the inner room and circa
C17 wings to front and rear of the inner room was replaced in circa late C19. The
roof structure over the putative stair wing is circa early C17 and the roof structure
over the lower end again C19.
Exterior: Two storeys. Asymmetrical elevations on all faces. The front elevation
of the gatehouse (facing east) has a 4-window front. Wide 4-centred granite arch
with rounded stops to right of centre. Three 4-centred chamfered and hollow
chamfered arches to left, with stepped and diagonal stops. First floor with two C20
2-light mullion windows to left and two circa C17 2-light mullion windows to right.
Several rows of pigeon holes near centre. There is a straight joint towards the left
hand end and a straight joint between the gatehouse and lower right hand range.
However, the latter is probably the result of a rebuilding rather than extension, low
battlemented range to left. The coat of arms on the gatehouse was reset by the
previous owners in the mid C20 and it is uncertain where it came from.
Within the courtyard the east elevation of the house was partly refenestrated by J.P.
St Aubyn. 4-centred arch with hollow chamfer and roll mould to left of centre with
two C19 windows to left and a C19 6-light window and circa late C16 6-light window
partly restored in C19 to right. The two 6-light windows are of similar style with
segmental headed hollow chamfered arches to the lights. First floor with C19 2-light
mullion window to left and two circa late C16 3-light mullion windows to right.
Returning to front right the C17 wing has a C19 6-light mullion windows of similar
design to the hall windows and a C19 3-light mullion window on first floor. The
moulded granite plinth to the main range does not continue along the front wall of
this C17 wing; the front wall appearing to have been partly rebuilt. To the left of
the main range the north elevation of the wing to front left was refaced or rebuilt
by J.P. St Aubyn. It has a 2-storey semi-circular stair tower with conical roof to
right of centre with a C19 6-light mullion window to left and C19 plank door to
right. The west elevation of the gate house range has a 4-centred granite arch to
left of centre with hollow chamfered and roll moulded frame and carved spandrels
connecting the gatehouse with the wing to front right of the main range is a stone
rubble garden wall with C19 cast iron gate.
The west elevation of the main range has C17 fenestration which has been partly
renewed in the C19 and the south elevation was considerably altered in the late C19
with large granite mullion windows inserted with gabled half dormers above.
Interior: The gatehouse has a straight flight of stone steps up to first floor. At
the top of the steps to left and right are square headed chamfered granite
doorframes. C20 partitions have been inserted on the first floor. The roof
structure was only partly accessible; the roof structure to the left of the stair is
of the circa C18 with partly halved, lap-jointed and pegged and nailed apices and
The main range of the house has a wide passage with a reset screen (inserted by the
previous owners in the mid C20 replacing an earlier glazed screen). The screen has
C19 panelling on the lower left hand face and C17 panelling facing the hall. The
hall and passage have multiple moulded cross beams (with roll mould flanking ogee
mould) which are supported on granite corbels. The beams are jointed into a
continuous wall plate which has a similar carved moulding and continues around the
hall and passage, thereby forming a framed ceiling. C19 hall fireplace. C17
panelling reset on higher partition between hall and inner room. The inner room has
very slight chamfered beams with straight cut stops. The cross wall between the
inner room and front wing has been removed and the fireplace in the latter has been
blocked and the ceiling plastered.
The stair wing has a probable C19 stair which was reset by the previous owners in the
mid C20. The stair is of a grand early C18 style with open string, square newels
with ornate finials and turned and barley-sugar twisted balusters. It is possible
that the treads and part of the stair may be earlier. In the wing on front left of
the main range the fireplaces are unmoulded and the granite lintels probably C19.
The C19 stair in the turret has a central newel but the arrangement is that of a dog-
leg; deep moulded rail and stick balusters. The closed tread has a carved panel
which is possibly C17 and has been reused.
On the first floor the partitions have been altered. There is a granite 4-centred
chamfered arch above the partition between the hall and inner room.
Roof structure over the room directly below the passage, over the higher end of the
hall, the inner room and over the wings to front and rear of inner room replaced
probably in 1882. (There is a short note which was written on one of the trusses in
1882). Above the lower end of the hall and the partition between the hall and
passage are two trusses which have morticed apices, morticed cambered collars and
holes for two tiers of threaded purlins. Hanging from the centre of the collars is a
pair of tear-drops shaped flat pendants with an incised triangle directly above.
This unusual carving is carved from the same piece of wood as the collar and was not
applied separately. The higher truss is blackened and sooty in patches on the blade
and collar and more uniformly on the underside of the truss. The roof structure
above the stair wing has 4 trusses with morticed apiced and halved, dovetailed and
single notched lap-jointed collars. The roof structure above the front left hand
wing was not inspected.
Peter Trevillyan had two parlours at Basil in 1608 suggesting that the house was
already sizable in the early C17 and John Trevillyna was taxed for 11 hearths in
Sources Cheshire, V.M. and F.J. The Cornishman's House, 1968
Stoate, T.L. Cornwall Hearth and Poll Taxes 1660-1664
Information from trustees.
Listing NGR: SX2045884070
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