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25 and 27 High Street

A Grade II Listed Building in Poole Town, Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole

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Latitude: 50.7132 / 50°42'47"N

Longitude: -1.9873 / 1°59'14"W

OS Eastings: 400991

OS Northings: 90397

OS Grid: SZ009903

Mapcode National: GBR XQB.MW

Mapcode Global: FRA 67Q6.9KN

Plus Code: 9C2WP277+73

Entry Name: 25 and 27 High Street

Listing Date: 28 May 1974

Last Amended: 29 July 2022

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1223426

English Heritage Legacy ID: 412482

ID on this website: 101223426

Location: Old Town, Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole, Dorset, BH15

County: Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Poole

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Poole St James with St Paul

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury

Tagged with: Building

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Two commercial premises, originally probably a single house. Late C16/early C17; extended in the later C17 and refronted in the late C18 or early C19. Further alterations in the later C19, C20 and C21.


Two commercial premises, originally probably a single house. Built probably in the late C16/early C17; extended in the later C17 and refronted in the late C18 or early C19. Further alterations in the later C19, C20 and C21.

It is constructed of cut and squared stone rubble and brick, with painted walls and gabled roofs covered with concrete tiles and slate. No chimneystacks are extant.

The present footprint of the building is rectangular. It comprises the original two-storey and attics front range of single depth, a two-storey wing at right angles to the rear of 25 and various other rear extensions of one and two storeys which were added between the late C17 and the C20.

The principal elevation of four bays faces onto the High Street, and has a central, round-headed doorway in a brick surround with a modern panelled door, flanked by shop fronts with plate-glass windows and a modern continuous fascia. The first-floor windows are mid-C20 steel casements with timber sub-frames and the two dormer windows also have steel frames of this date. The Bell Lane elevation has an inserted attic window set in brick in the gabled end of the front elevation. The attached wing to 27 High Street breaks forwards and is built of coursed stone rubble, though brick coursing below the eaves and to the apex of the gabled end indicate that the roof has been raised. There are inserted openings in the right end bay on Bell Lane, with a timber sash window on the ground floor and a uPVC window above, both are set in brick and are later insertions. The wing has been extended to the south-west, probably in the C18, with a parallel brick range under the same roof, and to the south-east is a lower, narrow, two-storey addition, built on a slight skew, which has modern windows with uPVC frames. The southern wing to 25 High Street which was substantially rebuilt in the late C20 has stone rubble walls to the south-west and north-west sides, now rendered, a north-east elevation of red brick and plain tile hanging to the apex of the south-west gable. Notes from the RCHME survey (see Sources) refer to a C17 window with stone surround in the south-west wall but it is not clear if it remains since the present 23 High Street abuts the wing.

The ground floor of 25 High Street has been opened up with the removal of the wall between the front range and rear wing. The central section has a ceiling divided by moulded oak ribs into a geometric pattern of squares. 27 High Street retains a series of inter-connected ground-floor rooms which have suspended ceilings, modern joinery and shop fittings. A patterned ceiling was present in the mid-C20 (RCHME field notes). The passage between 25 and 27 is understood to contain a stone doorway with a four-centred lintel. The first floor of 25 is accessed from a staircase against the east wall but plans of the building from 1972 indicate that there was previously a staircase in the rear wing. Upstairs, the two rooms to the front have been opened up. The inner room, which is interrupted by a later stud wall, has a moulded cornice and a hexagonal patterned ceiling of moulded oak ribs. There was a first-floor gallery that probably once extended the full length of the rear wings, however, all but its north end appears to have been lost during rebuilding. At the foot of the attic stairs is an C18 two-panel door with raised and fielded panels. Only the lower part of the roof structure is visible in the attic, but there is a mid-C20 drawing of the queen post roof, two rows of purlins and windbraces. The accompanying description records that the windbraces are set one side of the trusses only, bracing the upper purlin, and that each pair of braces in effect forms a four-centred arch. The queen posts are missing, and the upper section of the roof is now ceiled over. The upper floors of 27 High Street have been converted to a separate flat and were not accessible.


25 and 27 High Street was built around the end of the C16 or beginning of the C17 and formed a pair of attached dwellings with the adjoining 21 and 23 High Street (demolished in the 1960s). 25 and 27 appears to have been an L-shaped building with a single-depth front range and a rear wing at right angles to 25. Various two-storey extensions were subsequently added to the rear, including a later C17 stone addition to 27; a further stone wing to 25; and several brick additions; one filling the space between the two main wings and an offset range to the rear of 27. The building was later refronted in brick, probably in the C18 or early C19, a period of huge prosperity and one of extensive building in Poole, largely as a result of the Newfoundland cod fisheries trade (Conservation Area Appraisal, see Sources). It is unclear when it was sub-divided or when the ground floor was converted to shops. Further external alterations have occurred since the mid-C20, as illustrated by a photograph taken in 1942 of the street elevation. These include alterations to the shop fronts; removing the first-floor sash windows, and their replacement with large casement windows; replacing the dormer windows; replacing windows elsewhere in the building and replacing the roof covering with concrete tiles. By the mid-C20 the southern wing to the rear of 25 High Street was ruinous, and it was reinstated in 1987-88.

25 and 27 High Street, along with 21 and 23, was included in a survey of Poole undertaken in the mid-C20 by the Royal Commission on Historical Monuments of England (RCHME, see Sources). Further recording was carried out in 1960 prior to the demolition of 21 and 23 High Street, and the present building on that plot was constructed soon afterwards.

Reasons for Listing

25 and 27 High Street, a late-C16/early-C17 former house that has undergone additions and alteration from the later C17 through to the C21, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:
* despite the degree of later intervention and losses, the building retains its external envelope and character as an evolved urban dwelling with late-C16/early-C17 origins;
* for its relatively good survival of early fabric, notably the patterned ceilings of moulded oak ribs and the original roof structure.

Historic interest:
* it reflects the prosperity of the town’s merchant class, particularly during the C17, and the history of its social and commercial development since that period.

Group value:
* with the many listed buildings in the immediate vicinity including 20, 22, 24 and 26, 28 and 30 on the west side of the High Street and 19 and 29 on the east side.

External Links

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