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Former Officers Terrace and Attached Front Area Walls and Overthrows

A Grade I Listed Building in Gillingham, Medway

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Latitude: 51.3941 / 51°23'38"N

Longitude: 0.5282 / 0°31'41"E

OS Eastings: 575982

OS Northings: 169154

OS Grid: TQ759691

Mapcode National: GBR PPP.GCT

Mapcode Global: VHJLV.37L3

Plus Code: 9F329GVH+M7

Entry Name: Former Officers Terrace and Attached Front Area Walls and Overthrows

Listing Date: 24 May 1971

Last Amended: 21 November 1996

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1268220

English Heritage Legacy ID: 462078

Location: River, Medway, ME4

County: Medway

Electoral Ward/Division: River

Built-Up Area: Gillingham

Traditional County: Kent

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Kent

Church of England Parish: Gillingham St Mark

Church of England Diocese: Rochester

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(East side) Chatham Dockyard
Nos. 1-12 (Consecutive)
24.05.1971 Former Officers' Terrace and
attached front area walls and


Terrace of 12 houses. 1722-1731. Brick with stucco basement, stone dressings, party wall stacks and slate hipped roof. PLAN: double-depth plan, with rear service wings enclosing flagged yards. Built on a slope, with basement offices entered from the front, and family and staff access from the rear.
EXTERIOR: each of 3 storeys, basement and attic; 4-window range, 3-window range houses set back. A symmetrical terrace, with end and central pairs of houses set forward and slightly raised, clasping pilasters and divided by paired pilasters to round-arched gablets, plat band and cornice, and crenellated parapet with gabled merlons.
Timber Doric porches have clasping pilasters to a triglyph frieze and modillion cornice, 6-panel doors with flush panels, and 6-pane side windows; placed asymmetrically to each house, the middle pair set back 1 bay from the centre, the outer ones 1 bay from the outer bays, and the intervening sections in the inner bays. Segmental-arched windows have late C19 2-light horned sashes.
Rear mews range of rendered 2-storey blocks connected by single-storey entrance blocks containing round-arched doorways with fluted stone fanlights, ground-floor windows with labels, and segmental-arched first-floor windows. Good dated lead hoppers and downpipes set in re-entrants.
INTERIOR: varied interiors: No.6 has a basement room with good curved corner double doors to a fine open well stair with column-on-vase balusters, fluted column newels and ramped, wreathed rails. Recessed houses have plain stairs from the front entrance with turned balusters. Wainscotting and dado, reeded cornices, plain fire surrounds; continuous attic along the terrace. SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: attached front walls enclosing front area, with 2 wrought-iron overthrow arches with lamps to front steps down to Medway Gardens.
HISTORY: probably designed in-house by the Navy Board, each house was allotted to an officer of the Dockyard, who conducted his business from the basement; the porch is reported to have been used by sedan chair porters to transport the officer round the Dockyard. Each has a rear enclosed garden and stabling forming a parallel terrace (qv). The most ambitious of the post 1716 development on the hillside to the N of the yard, and with the sail loft, enclosing wall, gateway and lodges (qqv), in the manner associated with the Ordnance Board at the Arsenal, Berwick-on- Tweed, Devonport and elsewhere at this time.
As a unified palace front, one of the most advanced terrace designs for its date outside London, and the finest surviving in a Navy yard, the 1690 terrace at Plymouth having been partially destroyed by bombing c1941.
Each house has an enclosed garden and store across the rear access lane, ( qv). (Sources: Barker N: English Architecture Public and Private: London: 1993: 199-230 ; Coad J: Historic Architecture of Chatham Dockyard 1700-1850: London: 1982: 142 ; MacDougall P: The Chatham Dockyard Story: Rainham: 1987: 59; The Buildings of England: Newman J: West Kent and the Weald: London: 1976: 205).

Listing NGR: TQ7595469103

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