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Pumpy Cottage

A Grade II Listed Building in South Tawton, Devon

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Latitude: 50.7117 / 50°42'42"N

Longitude: -3.8947 / 3°53'40"W

OS Eastings: 266327

OS Northings: 91945

OS Grid: SX663919

Mapcode National: GBR Q8.HF9H

Mapcode Global: FRA 27Q6.BJ3

Plus Code: 9C2RP464+M4

Entry Name: Pumpy Cottage

Listing Date: 4 March 1988

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1305886

English Heritage Legacy ID: 94991

Location: South Tawton, West Devon, Devon, EX20

County: Devon

Civil Parish: South Tawton

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: South Tawton St Andrew

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

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4/194 Pumpy Cottage


Cottage in part of a former farmhouse. Late C15-early C16 with major later C16 and
C17 improvements, reduced in size to present cottage probably in C19. Granite stone
rubble; stone stacks, the hall stack still with its original granite ashlar
chimneyshaft; slate roof, formerly thatch.
Plan and development: 2-room plan cottage facing south-east built down the
hillslope. In fact these 2 rooms are the hall and inner room of a late medieval 3-
room-and-through-passage plan house, probably a Dartmoor longhouse. The inner room,
at the uphill right end, has a gable-end stack; so too does the hall although this
was formerly an axial stack backing onto the passage (part of which remains in a
leanto there). The garage and store rooms on the left end occupy the site of the
original shippon. The late C15-early C16 farmhouse was open to the roof, divided by
low partitions and heated by an open hearth fire. Probably in the mid C16 the inner
room end was floored and this new chamber jettied into the upper end of the hall.
The hall stack was inserted in the late C16 - early C17 and the hall floored in the
C17. Now 2 storeys with C20 kitchen outshot to rear.
Exterior: regular 2-window front of C20 casements with glazing bars and the roof is
gable-ended. The front end of the leanto contains the passage front doorway, now
with a C20 plank door.
Good interior: at the upper end of the hall the stone rubble crosswall may be an
original low partition, the oak round-headed doorframe it contains could well be
late C15 - early C16. The late C16 - early C17 fireplace is granite ashlar with
hollow-chamfered surround and now contains a C19 oven. The C17 axial beam has plain
soffit chamfers and the contemporary joists (in the rear bay) are also soffit-
chamfered. Inner room has plain joists and the stack here appears to be a C19
insertion. The roof structure is original and contains 2 face-pegged jointed cruck
trusses with cambered collars and small triangular yokes (Alock's apex type L1).
Both trusses are smoke-blackened from the open hearth fire. The wattle-and-daub
crosswall between the hall and inner room chambers is smoke-blackened on the hall
side only.
East Week is a straggling hamlet which contains several other attractive listed
buildings. The roof truss close to the hall chimneybreast includes a series of
holes drilled into the undersides of the collar and principals. Does this indicate
a smoke bay here before the hall stack was built?
Source: N Alcock and M Laithwaite. Medieval Houses in Devon and their
modernisation. Ed. Arcn 17 (1973), pp 109-111, figs 43 and 45.

Listing NGR: SX6632791945

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