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Great Champson Farmhouse

A Grade II* Listed Building in Molland, Devon

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Latitude: 51.0425 / 51°2'32"N

Longitude: -3.7098 / 3°42'35"W

OS Eastings: 280232

OS Northings: 128402

OS Grid: SS802284

Mapcode National: GBR L6.GQ06

Mapcode Global: FRA 363C.BKH

Plus Code: 9C3R27RR+X3

Entry Name: Great Champson Farmhouse

Listing Date: 20 February 1967

Grade: II*

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1213706

English Heritage Legacy ID: 398315

Location: Molland, North Devon, Devon, EX36

County: Devon

District: North Devon

Civil Parish: Molland

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Molland St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

Tagged with: Farmhouse

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SS 8028-8128
20/87 Great Champson Farmhouse
Farmhouse. Early to mid - C16, with additions and probably alterations of the early
and later C17, and further alterations and possible additions of the early C18. Mid
- to late C19 internal alterations. Dressed sandstone to front on coursed stone
rubble plinth, porch with ashlar dressings. Coursed sandstone rubble to sides and
rear (left-hand gable end rendered), and cob over stone rubble in rear wing. Gable-
ended asbestos-slate roof, with catslide over outshut at rear. Scantle-slate roof
over porch. Sandstone stacks with offsets and weatherings left-hand and rear stacks
Plan and development: 4-room and through-passage plan, facing south-east, over end to
the left. Consisting of hall (formerly open to the roof) with C16 external lateral
stack to rear, through passage (possibly formerly with gallery over) with C16 gabled
porch, former service room to its left with external end stack, and former inner room
or parlour to right with integral lateral stack to rear and probably contemporary
former second upper room beyond. Dog-leg staircase to left at rear of through
passage, probably C16 but possibly a C17 alteration. Early C17 one-roomed kitchen
wing (latterly dairy) added to rear of hall. First floor inserted in hall, probably
in the early C18 (see early C18 panelling etc. in rooms above) and staircase to rear
of hall (including corridor to rear of central bedrooms) probably also inserted at
the same time. House refenestrated, probably also in the early C18. Outshut added
(see straight joint in gable end) to rear of right-hand end of house, either in the
late C17 or in the C18 (passage in outshut to rear of ground-floor room). Staircase
probably inserted between the two upper end rooms probably in the early C18, and
front door at foot of stairs probably inserted at the same time. Late C19
alterations probably included the insertion of a cross passage at the higher right
hand end of the hall, incorporatiing a reused screen (more elaborate than the right-
hand screen and probably formerly between hall and parlour; front door of passage
probably inserted at the same time. Right-hand end rooms remodelled in the C19. It
is possible that the hall was floored earlier than the early C18, perhaps in the late
C17, and a that a great chamber was created on the first floor (probably still open
to the roof) which was only divided into smaller chambers in the C18 (note first
floor C18 paired sash straddling divided wall, possibly suggesting that it was an
earlier window opening altered in the C18. The lack of any obvious C17 ceiling beams
in the inserted hall ceiling suggests that a C18 date is more likely, however plain
ceiling beams might suggest that the ceiling was plastered, and possibly moulded
plasterwork of the C17. The C18 steps up to the attic and the plastered soffit to
that part of the roof over the hall suggest that the roofspace over the hall was used
as domestic accommodation, probably after the hall was floored in the C18. However
there is no evidence of any former dormer windows, but it is possible that there was
an unrendered bay. The plastered soffit covers moulded purlins and wind braces so is
almost certainly an addition. The stud partitions at each end of the hall roof
possibly date from when the hall was open to the roof from the ground floor, but
probably date from intermediate stage with a great chamber on the first floor,
remaining open to the roof. The end trusses of the hall are only moulded on the hall
side but the partitions probably are later than the C16, and it is probable that in
the C16 the roofspace was open from end to end but only visible from the open hall.
It is possible that the right-hand upper-end room is a later addition to the C16
house, perhaps of the late C17 or early C18 (note later roof, post-c.1700 looking
stack etc). There is a probably C16 moulded plinth to front of the parlour and
upper-end addition which suggests that the present plan of the house reflects the C16
layout. However it is possible that the upper-end addition was added in the C17, at
which time the front wall of the original parlour was also rebuilt (with plinth).
There is no moulded plinth to the hall and service end of the house which might
suggest that it is these parts which have been rebuilt, however the C16 porch retains
a moulded plinth so this would seem unlikely. The obviously later roof (probably
late C17) over the right-hand end of the house suggests strongly that the upper end
room has been added (and the front wall of the parlour rebuilt) as is unlikely that
such a small section of the roof would need to be rebuilt. One further explanation
is that the plinth is C16 but that most of the rest of the front wall (including
parts of the plinth) has been rebuilt or replaced above it. Two storeys with
outshut, and rear wing of one storey and attic.
Exterior: Hollow-chamfered plinth to right of centre door, on sub plinth. An
asymetrical front, with 5 windows to first floor and 4 to ground floor. Left-hand
(service) end has C19 three light wooden casement to ground and first floor, each
with dressed-stone flat arch. Small first-floor C20 wooden casement over porch. C18
boxed glazing-bar sashes (some C20 replacements with horns) to right-hand end of
house, with dressed-stone flat arches (hall window with segmental stone-arched head)
and cills; paired 12-pane glazing bar sashes (3 panes along and 2 up to each leaf) to
first-floor rooms over hall, divided by 4 vertical blind panes; tripartite sashes
(12-pane sash with flanking 4-pane strip) to hall, parlour and room above, and 16-
pane sashes (4-pane along and 2 up to each leaf) to right hand end. Nail-studded
boarded through passage door with early C19 beaded frame and 4-part rectangular
overlight. Gabled porch with hollow-chamfered plinth and shaped barge boards. 4-
centered arched entrance with outer continuous hollow chamfer and inner roll
moulding, springing from shafts (weathered) with moulded bases and capitals;
hoodmould and arch with dressed voussoirs above. Two stone steps up to entrance.
Small narrow openings to sides, that to right-hand side with pointed-arched head.
Interior of porch with stone floor, plastered coved ceiling and side openings with
splayed jambs. Wooden side bench to left with shaped legs. Recessed possibly C18
(reused?) nail-studded boarded door between second and third windows from right, with
5-pane rectangular overlight and dressed-stone flat arch, and C20 half-glazed door
between first and second windows from right with rectangular overlight and dressed-
stone flat arch. Lean-to outshut at rear has central boarded door with wooden
lintel, possibly C18 two-light small-paned wooden casement to right with wooden
lintel and C20 two-light wooden casement to left, also with wooden lintel. North-
east end of lean-to has ground-and first-floor 2-light wooden casements with stone
flat-arched heads. Gable end of rear kitchen wing has C19 three-light wooden attic
casement and ground-floor C19 wooden casement with wooden lintel.
Interior: Left-hand through passage has moulded cross joists with runout stops and
moulded wall plates. Old nail-studded boarded door to stairs at rear of passage.
Late C17 eight-panelled door below stairs. C18 door to left-hand (service) room with
6 raised and fielded panels. Left-hand ground-floor room has chamfered intersecting-
beam ceiling and blocked old fireplaces. C19 door between through passage and hall
has reused linenfold panels. Hall with plastered ceiling, and slate fireplace of c.
1840 (possibly an indication of the date of the C19 internal alterations) on rear
wall with tall reeded consoles supporting mantelshelf. Two late C17 on early C18
wall cupboards. Late C17 cupboard in front wall with two 2-panelled doors and H-L
hinges. Plastered walls and ceiling to hall. Small 6-light window in rear wall,
providing borrowed light to rear staircase. Through passage to right of hall with
plank and muntin screens on each side. Left-hand screen probably reused, possibly
from left-hand end of wall, with heavy moulded muntins, carved linenfold panels,
moulded bottom rail, carved frieze and central four-centred arched doorway with
carved spandrels and C19 door with reused linenfold panels. Right-hand plank and
muntin screen with plain chamfered muntins, moulded bottom rail and carved frieze.
C19 door at rear of passage with reused linenfold panels. Late C17 eight-panelled
door in right-hand screen, between passage and former parlour. Parlour (Oak Room)
has 9-compartment ceiling with moulded intersecting beams and moulded wall beams, C17
panelling (said to be introduced, possibly reordered) with carved consoles to frieze
supporting moulded cornice. C19 Jacobean style fireplace and C18 square-headed buffet
to right with shaped shelves and cupboard above with raised and fielded panelled
doors. Also panelled internal window shutters. Probably C18 staircase between 2
upper end rooms; C18 archway at foot of stairs with moulded sides, cornice and
architrave with shaped key block. Blocked moulded Tudor-arched wooden doorway at
rear of parlour, visible from rear passage. Former kitchen in ground-floor of C17
rear wing has chamfered cross beam with runout stops, large open fireplace with
dressed stone jambs and ovolo-moulded wooden lintel and low slate shelves (latterly
dairy). Moulded Tudor-arched doorway at top of stairs to rear of left-hand through
passage with panelled spandrels and old boarded door. Cavetto-moulded Tudor-arched
doorway (with old sole plate) between left-hand bedroom and room over passage. Two
bedrooms over hall have early C18 doors with 4 raised and fielded panels and early
C18 window seats with raised and fielded panels and butterfly hinges. Passage to
rear of bedrooms also has C18 doors with 4 raised and fielded panels, at top of
stairs and room to rear. C19 four-panelled door at right-hand end of rear passage.
C18 winder staircase rises from left-hand bedroom above hall up to attic, and has C18
door at foot with 4 raised and fielded panels.
Fine early C16 roof without any smoke blackening. Consisting of 4 bays over hall and
4 bays each over service end and parlour end. Probably late C17 three-bay roof over
far right-hand end. Fine trusses (nos. 4-8 from left) over hall with principal
rafters mortice and tenoned at apices, collars with cambered tops and moulded
(cavetto and roll) arched bracing springing from moulded wall plate. Three pairs of
threaded purlins, the lower pairs heavily moulded and the upper 2 pairs hollow-
chamfered with runout stops, and quadrant-moulded wind braces (some removed). Most
old rafters survive too. Small short curved feet attached to feet of principal
rafters (above wall) probably mortice and tenoned. End trusses of hall with arch
bracing moulded on hall-side only and have plastered stud partitions, unblackened on
both sides. Soffit of hall roof also plastered (presumably post C16) between
trusses, except for right-hand bay. Mouldings on arch bracing cut back when attic
floor (first-floor ceiling) inserted. Sections of C16 roof over upper and lower
ends are less elaborate, probably not visible from former open hall but just possibly
formerly visible from first floor rooms at each end. Four trusses (nos. 1,3,9 and
10) with principal rafters mortice and removed at apices, collars with cambered stops
and chamfered arched bracing. Two trusses (nos. 2 and 11) consisting of principal
rafters with short curved feet (possibly raised crucks) and cambered collars.
Sections of roof over both upper and lower ends with 3 pairs of chamfered threaded
purlins and chamfered curved wind braces. Walls over upper and lower ends plastered
up to lower-purlin level. Stud partition between trusses 2 and 3, over the lower end
of the cross passage. Probably C17 three-bay roof over far right-hand end with 3
trusses (nos. 12, 13 and 14), consisting of principal rafters, with mortice and
tenoned apices and notched lapped collars; diagonally-set ridge-piece and three pairs
of trenched purlins. Truss no. 12 marks the division between the early C16 house
and the probable C17 addition, and has flush stud and wattle and daub partition.
Section of attic over hall with old floorboards and servants' - bell wires.
This is a very complete example of a C16 Devon house, and is particularly notable for
its fine roof.

Listing NGR: SS8023228402

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