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Royal Castle Hotel

A Grade II* Listed Building in Dartmouth, Devon

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Latitude: 50.3515 / 50°21'5"N

Longitude: -3.5785 / 3°34'42"W

OS Eastings: 287793

OS Northings: 51372

OS Grid: SX877513

Mapcode National: GBR QS.RB7D

Mapcode Global: FRA 38D3.MNV

Entry Name: Royal Castle Hotel

Listing Date: 14 September 1949

Grade: II*

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1218065

English Heritage Legacy ID: 387368

Location: Dartmouth, South Hams, Devon, TQ6

County: Devon

District: South Hams

Civil Parish: Dartmouth

Built-Up Area: Dartmouth

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Dartmouth Townstal

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

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Listing Text


673-1/8/259 (West side)
14/09/49 No.11
Royal Castle Hotel


Pair of merchant's houses, dated 1639, united and converted to
an inn in the C18. Built for William Barnes and Joseph
Cubbitt. By 1736 Barnes' house (the right one) was known as
the New Inn owned by John Summers, and by 1782 John Browne had
acquired Cubbitt's house and the 2 were already known as The
Castle. The late C18 improvements are probably associated with
him. Extensive alterations in 1840.
Stucco front. Mixed construction; thick party walls of local
stone rubble, front and back walls of plastered
timber-framing; stone rubble stacks with C19 brick
chimneyshafts and old pots; slate roof.
PLAN: Built as a pair of houses, both end onto The Quay.
Originally both had front blocks 2 rooms deep with stacks in
their right party walls. Both houses had rear blocks behind
small courtyards, and the right one at least was connected to
the front block by a gallery. C17 fabric survives extensively
on the lower 2 floors and this influenced the major rebuild of
1840 when front and rear blocks were raised and the courtyard
glazed over to house a new grand staircase and galleries. Wide
passage from nearly-central front doorway through front block
to the courtyard. Some of original internal partitions
removed, particularly on the ground floor.
EXTERIOR: 4 storeys with attics; symmetrical 5-window front.
Upper floors from 1840, but C17 structure indicated by jettied
first and second floors. Ends of the stone party walls corbel
out to carry the jetties. They are plastered but, in the
centre wall, the original date plaque is exposed, inscribed
1639 with the initials of William and Mary Barnes and Joseph
and Johane Cubbitt, just below the corbelling for the
second-floor jetty. Because of the central stone wall the
front doorway is right of centre; probably early C19 flanking
fluted Doric columns support the jetty and C18 eared stucco
surround to doorway under a leafy frieze, 5-panel door. Ground
floor has C18 sashes, 2 to left of the doorway and a triple
sash to right, all originally 12-pane sashes but glazing bars
have been removed. Front is symmetrical above. First floor has
2 late C18 large curving bay windows, each containing three
12-pane sashes. Second and third floors have a 5-window front
of 1840, central blind windows and 12-pane sashes, all with
stucco Tudor-style hoodmoulds. Stucco castellated parapet
complete with decorative machicolation and end turrets for
flagpoles. Parallel roof hipped both ends and contains 2 front
flat-roofed dormers containing C20 casements. Plain rear
jettied at first-floor level suggesting C17 origins.
INTERIOR: Essentially the result of the 1840 rebuild but
carpentry of the C17 right house exposed at ground-floor
level; axial joists of large scantling from front and rear
blocks and 2 alcoves, apparently for newel stairs. An
ovolo-moulded axial beam provides evidence for C17 gallery
across the original coutyard. Some C17 pine overlapping-plank
screen reused in the bar, the left front room. Room above has
good original ornamental plaster ceiling of single rib design
with moulded angle sprays. To rear of first-floor right room
is a late C17 timber arch with keystone and capitals, possibly
from a cupboard or even a blocked doorway through to No.12 The
Quay (qv). Rest of the building largely C19 and includes some
fine features. The covered courtyard is particularly
impressive with galleries and stick-baluster stair. Windows
each side include horned sashes. Old service bells with room
HISTORY: The Royal Castle Hotel is the largest building on the
west side of The Quay overlooking the Boat Float. Originally
it was 2 of a group of merchants' houses built on reclaimed
land in a Town Corporation-backed scheme to reclaim land for
housing and expand the port facilities with the New Quay. This
began in 1585, and by the second phase, in the 1630s, this was
the most fashionable part of the town, and the surviving C17
houses here are amongst the best merchants' houses of their
period in Devon.
(Freeman, Ray: Dartmouth and its Neighbours: Phillimore:
1990-: P.76-83/P.139/P.153).

Listing NGR: SX8778051369

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

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