History in Structure

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Former Mast House and Mould Loft

A Grade I Listed Building in Chatham, Medway

We don't have any photos of this building yet. Why don't you be the first to send us one?

Upload Photo »

Approximate Location Map
Large Map »


Latitude: 51.3966 / 51°23'47"N

Longitude: 0.5289 / 0°31'44"E

OS Eastings: 576025

OS Northings: 169434

OS Grid: TQ760694

Mapcode National: GBR PPP.8KH

Mapcode Global: VHJLV.35Z5

Plus Code: 9F329GWH+MH

Entry Name: Former Mast House and Mould Loft

Listing Date: 13 August 1999

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1378590

English Heritage Legacy ID: 476543

Location: 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

Find accommodation in

Listing Text

(East side) Chatham Dockyard
Former Mast House and Mould Loft


Mast house and mould loft, now museum. 1753-55, altered 1833. Weather-boarded timber frame and slate roof. PLAN: rectangular open plan with mould loft to 3 middle bays. EXTERIOR: single storey with second storey to middle 3 ranges, and attic to middle. Near-symmetrical range of 5 gables with a further W range, the middle one taller, with raking
.roof across to flanking bay above the mould loft. Ground-floor of continuos garage doors, and wide windows above with glazing bars. Middle range has 7 first-floor 6/9-pane sashes, and 5 attic 9-pane windows, flanking ranges have 2 first-floor 6/6-pane sashes. Middle range has large flat-headed dormers and 3 small ridge louvres, flat roof lights to other ranges, the end ones with 4 dormers.
INTERIOR: an extensive open internal space, the mould loft supported by large posts with diagonal and ships' knee braces, a king post roof to outer sections, and central mould loft floor with a 13-bay collared queen post roof.
HISTORY: used for shaping and storing masts on the ground floor, and for drawing out plans in the wide space of the first-floor loft. The mould loft was extended 1833 to include part of the flanking bays, and was used to layout HMS Victory in 1759, and HMS Achilles in 1860, the first all metal warship in the world. From 1855 it was used as a store.
The last surviving timber mast house in a naval yard, providing evidence in the joints and members of ship-builders' techniques applied to building construction, and part of a fine group of naval buildings within a complete Georgian dockyard.
(Sources: Coad J: Historic Architecture of Chatham Dockyard 1700-1850: London: 1982: 153 ; Coad J: The Royal Dockyards 1690-1850: Aldershot: 1989: 159-161 ; MacDougall P: The Chatham Dockyard Story: Rainham: 1987: 61).

Listing NGR: TQ7602569431

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

Selected Sources

Book cover links are generated automatically from the sources. They are not necessarily always correct, as book names at Amazon may not be quite the same as those used referenced in the text.

Source title links go to a search for the specified title at Amazon. Availability of the title is dependent on current publication status. You may also want to check AbeBooks, particularly for older titles.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

BritishListedBuildings.co.uk is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact BritishListedBuildings.co.uk for any queries related to any individual listed building, planning permission related to listed buildings or the listing process itself.

British Listed Buildings is a Good Stuff website.