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Former Royal Naval Academy (Buildings Numbers 1/14, 1/116-19) and Attached Railings

A Grade II* Listed Building in Portsmouth, City of Portsmouth

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Latitude: 50.8002 / 50°48'0"N

Longitude: -1.1054 / 1°6'19"W

OS Eastings: 463137

OS Northings: 100446

OS Grid: SU631004

Mapcode National: GBR VNR.3M

Mapcode Global: FRA 86KZ.K4D

Plus Code: 9C2WRV2V+3R

Entry Name: Former Royal Naval Academy (Buildings Numbers 1/14, 1/116-19) and Attached Railings

Listing Date: 13 August 1999

Grade: II*

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1244573

English Heritage Legacy ID: 476657

Location: Charles Dickens, Portsmouth, PO1

County: City of Portsmouth

Electoral Ward/Division: Charles Dickens

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Portsmouth

Traditional County: Hampshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Hampshire

Church of England Parish: St Thomas of Canterbury, Portsmouth

Church of England Diocese: Portsmouth

Tagged with: Architectural structure

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(East Side)
HM Naval Base
774-1/30/198 Former Royal Naval Academy
(Buildings Nos 1114, 1116-19)
and attached railings


Royal Naval Academy, now offices and Officers' Mess, and attached railings. 1729-32; extensively remodelled 1808; bomb-damaged 1941 and parts subsequently rebuilt. Grey brick in header-bond with red brick and ashlar dressings. Hipped slate roof with brick stacks. PLAN: H-plan, asymmetrical with the cross-range near front; later additions across rear forming rear courtyard.
EXTERIOR: 3 storeys with basement. West elevation has central (cross) range of 9 bays, the 3 at centre projecting; pedimented wings of 3 bays, with 3-bay inner returns. Rusticated ashlar quoins; ashlar floor bands and cornice. Red brick surrounds to windows and parapet. Windows are round-arched on ground floor, segmental-arched above, smaller on 2nd floor, and have sashes with glazing bars. Mid C20 C18-style rainwater pipes with bulbous heads. Central entrance; ashlar steps, railings removed, up to 6-panel door with frieze fanlight with radial glazing bars, ashlar architrave, and flanking attached columns which support entablature with triglyph frieze and pediment. Central large octagonal
wooden cupola of 1808 has small round-arched windows and domed metal roof with round-arched dormers surmounted by ball-on-cushion finial. Wings: inner return of each has central steps with plain iron railings up to panelled wooden porch with attached columns supporting deep entablature, half-glazed double door with glazing bars, 6-pane side- windows, and 5-panel inner door. At end of each wing, stone steps down to basement, steps and area having iron railings on low ashlar plinth with curved-sectioned bars; columnar standards, some with ball finials; and gates at top of steps. Attached to right side of building is 2-storey 3-bay addition, similar but with tall flat-arched openings to ground floor. Left return: detailing continued in brick rather than ashlar; projecting stair tower with lean-to addition on its left; at left end a 2-storey late C19 brick addition with central pediment.
INTERIOR: some panelling survives. Entrance hall has large decorative brackets supporting entablature. Room on left has panelled walls and reveals, modillioned cornice and fluted Ionic pilasters to door architrave. Stair has panelled dado with short fluted columns; it is open-string and has moulded tread ends and stick balusters and fluted columnar newels supporting ramped moulded handrail with spiral curtail. Cupola has gallery, the stair up to it with turned balusters.
HISTORY: the Royal Naval Academy was created by an Order-in-Council in 1729 and established in 1733, the first naval shore-training establishment, and the forerunner of Dartmouth. The cupola was used for teaching, mock battles being conducted from the gallery and the golden ball (finial) used to teach the use of the sextant. Renamed the Royal Naval College in 1806, it was closed in 1837, and reopened as a higher education institute in 1839. As a training college for naval cadets it was of little influence in the C18, and was largely superseded in the mid C19 by HMS Britannia, and then Dartmouth.
(Sources: Coad J: Historic Architecture of HM Naval Base Portsmouth 1700- 1850: Portsmouth: 1981:12, plate 9 ; The Buildings of England: Lloyd D: Hampshire and the Isle of Wight: Harmondsworth: 1985: 412; Lloyd DW: Buildings of Portsmouth and its Environs: Portsmouth: 1974: 66).

Listing NGR: SU6299200361

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