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Willow Fields

A Grade II Listed Building in Wichenford, Worcestershire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.2196 / 52°13'10"N

Longitude: -2.3416 / 2°20'29"W

OS Eastings: 376759

OS Northings: 257990

OS Grid: SO767579

Mapcode National: GBR 0D8.W7Y

Mapcode Global: VH92K.CGFS

Plus Code: 9C4V6M95+V9

Entry Name: Willow Fields

Listing Date: 15 October 1984

Last Amended: 13 January 2020

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1349366

English Heritage Legacy ID: 151810

Location: Wichenford, Malvern Hills, Worcestershire, WR6

County: Worcestershire

Civil Parish: Wichenford

Traditional County: Worcestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Worcestershire

Church of England Parish: Wichenford

Church of England Diocese: Worcester

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Summary


A former barn with attached granary of C17 date, converted to residential use in the late C20.

Description

Former farm buildings of C17 date with C19 and late-C20 alterations, additions and conversion to residential use.

MATERIALS: constructed of oak timber framing with brick and wattle infill, brick replacement walling and some weatherboarding and render. The roofs are covered in tile.

PLAN: Cruciform on plan it is formed by a six-bay former barn on a north-west by south-east axis with two-bay additions to both sides: a former granary range to the north and an addition to the south, on the footprint of a former cowhouse. There is a small lean-to to the south-west end of the barn.

EXTERIOR: the principal entrance is to a full-height glazed bay on the north-west flank of the barn, with timber panelling (also to the south-east elevation). There are two framed bays of the former barn to the left and the projecting former brick-faced granary to the right. The framed bays have red brick panels, some with sealed ventilators in a diamond pattern, others with replacement late-C20 brick and four upper panels are glazed. To the ground floor left are garage double doors and there are steel tie ends to the bressumer. The former granary to the right of the main entrance has substantial brick piers to the ground floor, which have been infilled in brick in the late C20. The framed first floor has long braces and brick panels that are cement-rendered to each elevation, under a deep hipped roof. Alongside the south-west elevation of the former granary is a rebuilt lobby porch with door facing north. It is built against the south end of the former barn and has a catslide continuing the slope of the barn roof behind it. To its right the end bay of the barn has full-height glazing and timber panelling. The south-west end of the building has been substantially rebuilt on a brick plinth with damp-proof course and there is a rebuilt lean-to shelter against the end wall. Attached to the south is the former cowhouse rebuilt as two-bay accommodation faced in reused brick to the ground floor and with weatherboarding under a steeply-pitched roof to the south-west elevation. The north-east elevation has a framed first-floor with rendered panels. The south-west elevation of the north-east end of the former barn is glazed to the left and the framed bays to the right have weatherboarding and brick panels to the ground floor and plaster to the first floor. The end wall is framed with a queen strut truss and there are two former door openings to the ground floor, sealed in brick. Some sections of stone cills survive to the north corner of the building.

INTERIOR: the main entrance leads into a stone-flagged hallway with inserted timber stair and gallery. At upper level are exposed raking strut trusses to the former barn, which have cambered tie beams and jowled posts with assembly marks. The truss to the north wall is closed with modern infill and a door to the garage/ workshop area. It has long straight braces and a central post supporting the tie beam, in the same arrangement as the truss to the garage. The wall separating the house from the garage has been lined in concrete block. The pegged framing and roof within the garage is exposed to show double trenched purlins and ridge piece with C20 secondary timbers and a further C20 purlin. The end truss has three posts to the tie beams and a collar with V struts. At upper level the south wall has exposed lathes, some of which are covered in traditional plaster. Some elements of the timber frame retain bark to facing edges. The floors are covered in poured concrete.

The open truss to the south side of the entrance hallway has a modern post supporting the tie beam from the gallery landing. At ground-floor level is an inserted room with oak framed walls and to its rear a brick inglenook fireplace and ceiling has been inserted to a living room. The ground floor opens into the former cowhouse to the south, which has exposed reused C17 beams. To the north, the ground floor of the former granary has been enclosed in brick and adapted to a kitchen with exposed first-floor structures with stop-chamfered beams that have some evidence of rearrangement and scorching from the former agricultural use of the building.

To the first floor, the trusses have assembly marks and there are adapted and replaced timbers, notably to the rear of the building, as well as inserted bathrooms to the side of the gallery landing. The north barn wall has been partly opened up to the first floor of the former granary. The timber framing of the former granary is mostly exposed and the studs to the two trusses are numbered. There is timber bracing to the corners under the roof hips, and some timbers are C20 replacements. There are C20 room divisions. The exterior of the barn framing on the south wall is exposed to a first-floor bedroom, and there are visible assembly marks.

History

The former barn and granary are of two phases, both broadly of C17 origin, and the granary being the secondary construction. A cowhouse was formerly attached to the north-west side, but this building was replaced in the late C20 as part of the conversion of the buildings into residential accommodation. The building historically served Huck’s Farmhouse (listed at Grade II), close by to the north-east, which is also of C17 origin. The farm is shown on the Tithe Map of 1838 as ‘The Hucks Farm’ when the landowner was Francis Williams and the occupier was John Holder. The barn complex is shown to the south west of the farmhouse on an irregular cruciform plan and with a narrower width to its central bay. It is shown broadly on its current footprint on the Ordnance Survey Map of 1885, although the barn extends further to the south west. Also, a small structure is shown attached to the south flank of the north-east end of the barn.

The buildings underwent conversion to residential use in 1996 when the cowhouse was replaced with a new building on the same footprint, the granary was converted to a kitchen with bedrooms above, and the south west end of the barn was partly-rebuilt with a replacement lean-to shelter set against the end gable wall. The north east end of the barn was left largely unaltered and has remained in use as garaging and storage. Alterations were made to the internal layout including the creation of rooms within the envelope of the building, the insertion of a main staircase and landing, a new first floor-structure, and the replacement and reinforcement of some roof structure.

Reasons for Listing

Willow Fields, a set of C17 farm buildings converted to a residence, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:
* as a C17 former barn with attached granary it retains a consistent timber-framed construction and a significant proportion of its original fabric including roof structure, substantial sections of walling and the first-floor structure to the former granary;
* constructed using good quality workmanship and materials, including oak framing with assembly marks, in the vernacular traditons of the region;
* the late-C20 conversion to residential use of the majority of the building, and the replacement of the former cowhouse, has been carried out sympathetically and to a high quality, resulting in the retention of much of its historic character as the building has evolved.

Historic interest:
* the buildings represent important surviving evidence of the rural historic character of the area.

Group value:
* with Huck’s Farmhouse (listed at Grade II).

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