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Old Blundells Including Forecourt Walls on North East and Entrance Arch and Gates and 2 Lodges

A Grade I Listed Building in Tiverton, Devon

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Latitude: 50.9025 / 50°54'8"N

Longitude: -3.4833 / 3°28'59"W

OS Eastings: 295792

OS Northings: 112493

OS Grid: SS957124

Mapcode National: GBR LJ.RFCB

Mapcode Global: FRA 36LQ.8RZ

Plus Code: 9C2RWG28+XM

Entry Name: Old Blundells Including Forecourt Walls on North East and Entrance Arch and Gates and 2 Lodges

Listing Date: 12 February 1952

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1384961

English Heritage Legacy ID: 485420

Location: Tiverton, Mid Devon, Devon, EX16

County: Devon

District: Mid Devon

Civil Parish: Tiverton

Built-Up Area: Tiverton

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Tiverton St George

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

Tagged with: Boarding school Independent school

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SS9512 STATION ROAD, Tiverton
848-1/6/320 Old Blundells, incl forecourt walls
12/02/52 on NE, entrance arch, gates & 2


Former school and headmaster's house, now converted into 6
flats. 1604; C19 additions at rear. Ham stone ashlar on a
plinth of local, reddish stone ashlar. Rear windows may be of
Beer stone. Slated roof. 4 red brick chimneys, just visible
behind ridge; probably late C19 or early C20; with spiked
PLAN: consists of a very long range, originally divided into
higher school (on left), lower school and dining hall, with
parlour at right-hand end. There are 3 short rear wings. That
to the left, reached by a passage between the higher and lower
schools, was the usher's house. That in the middle, reached by
a passage between the lower school and the dining hall,
contained the kitchen. That on the right was the master's
house. Projecting entrance porches fronted the 2 passages.
EXTERIOR: single storey originally *upper floor now inserted)
with 2-storey entrance porches and rear wings. Front has 3
groups of 3 windows with a pair of gabled porches in the
intervening spaces. Windows have 12 stone mullioned and
transomed lights arranged in 3 rows of 4. Lights in the 2
upper rows have Tudor arches, while those in the bottom row (a
C19 addition) are flat-headed; double-chamfered mullions, the
frames with deeply cut hollow mouldings. Straight hoodmoulds.
Between the windows are buttresses, another C19 addition.
Porches have round-arched doorways, ovolo and ogee moulded
with hoodmoulds. Left-hand doorway has iron shoe-scrapers with
fleur-de-lys finials.
Over the doorways are semicircular niches with round heads
containing shell-like carving. Above each of these in the
upper storey is a 3-light mullioned and transomed window with
Tudor-arched lights and hoodmould, and in the gable a small
quatrefoil panel. Within the porches are stone benches with
moulded wooden tops. Inner doorways are of stone, Tudor-arched
and ovolo-moulded. Whole front has stone corbel table under
the eaves. On the roof behind the left-hand porch is an
octagonal wooden bell turret (rebuilt in 1840) with an
ogee-leaded roof. The base has fish scale slate hanging and,
in the front face, a clock. Round-headed, open arcade above
with bracketed cornice below the eaves; weather vane with
initials PB. The walling (especially in front of the 2
schoolrooms) is carved with many names and C19 dates; these
include distinguished Devon families such as Carew, Chichester
and Cruwys, and also RD Blackmore.
The left end wall has a 15-light mullioned and transomed Ham
stone window with straight hoodmould; lights are Tudor arched
and arranged in 3 rows of 5. Right end wall, including the
side of the headmaster's house, also has Ham stone mullioned
and transomed windows with Tudor-arched lights; 2 have leaded
lights, that to left of ground storey with heraldic devices in
coloured glass.
Rear wall has mullioned and transomed windows similar to those
at the front. Chimney in rear wall of hall has been cut down
and late C20 dormer windows introduced. Stone corbel-table
under the eaves.
INTERIOR: has been much altered in C19. The 2 schoolrooms are
no longer recognisable, and the fine 2-storey screens (with
initials PB and date 1604) flanking the passage between them
have gone. The best surviving feature is the roof, which
remains intact over the former schoolrooms. Almost incredibly
old fashioned for its date, it has arch-braced collar beams,
from which curved struts rise to the principal rafters; 3
tiers of curved wind-braces arranged in star pattern. The
remainder of the main roof, apart from the remains of one
truss, is understood to have been destroyed by fire in 1945 or
19476. A number of other details survive, especially at Nos 2
(dining-hall) and 5 (usher's house). The former has original
doorways, together with a fireplace in the rear wall. The
latter also has an original fireplace, and a stud partition
with Tudor-arched doors. There is good C19 work throughout the
SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: in front of the building is a lawned area
about 75m square, crossed by cobbled paths and enclosed by a
stone wall of local reddish coursed and squared rubble about
3m high. Most of it has a gabled coping; that on the
right-hand side appears to be of stone, but that at the front
end of the left-hand side seems to be of concrete while the
rear part of the left-hand side has a simpler, rounded
concrete coping. The quoins at the right-hand end of the front
wall are of a different, greyish stone. In the centre of the
front wall is the main gateway, rising to a considerably
higher level and finished with a small triangular gable.
Double-chamfered, round-arched opening with badly-weathered
remains of imposts and hoodmould Above it is a stone tablet in
a moulded frame, inscribed OLD BLUNDELLS A.D. 1604. Simple
iron gates, probably C19, with twisted pendants hanging from
the top rail. Flanking the gates, on the inside, are 2
rough-cast, single-storey lodges with slated roofs, gabled
towards the school, hipped towards the road. Each has a red
brick chimney with octagonal pot, so placed as to form a
finial at each end of the gateway. Lodges have small paned,
wood casement windows facing the school.
HISTORY: Blundells was founded under the will of Peter
Blundell (d.1601), an immensely successful Tiverton clothier
and merchant. It was the second largest grammar school in the
country (up to 150 pupils) and probably the largest in the
size of its building. The schoolhouse was sold in 1882 to
provide funds for the present school buildings on the
outskirts of the town. it was bought back in 1940 with funds
collected by the Old Blundellian Club and presented to the
school Governors in 1945. It was given to the National Trust
in 1954.

Listing NGR: SS9579512489

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