History in Structure

Queen Elizabeth Almshouses and Adjoining Boundary Walls and Gates

A Grade II Listed Building in Worcester, Worcestershire

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Latitude: 52.201 / 52°12'3"N

Longitude: -2.2248 / 2°13'29"W

OS Eastings: 384735

OS Northings: 255891

OS Grid: SO847558

Mapcode National: GBR 1FY.VSC

Mapcode Global: VH92M.DY62

Plus Code: 9C4V6Q2G+C3

Entry Name: Queen Elizabeth Almshouses and Adjoining Boundary Walls and Gates

Listing Date: 19 January 1989

Last Amended: 12 June 2001

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1390243

English Heritage Legacy ID: 489214

ID on this website: 101390243

Location: Britannia Square, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR1

County: Worcestershire

District: Worcester

Electoral Ward/Division: Arboretum

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Worcester

Traditional County: Worcestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Worcestershire

Church of England Parish: Worcester St George with St Mary Magdalene

Church of England Diocese: Worcester

Tagged with: Building

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620-1/8/656 (East side)
19/01/89 Queen Elizabeth
Almshouses and adjoining
boundary walls and gates
(Formerly Listed as:
Almshouses, blocks 1 and 2)
(Formerly Listed as:
Almshouses, block 3)
(Formerly Listed as:
Almshouses, blocks 4 and 5)


Almshouses. 1876-77, with later alterations, by Aston Webb.
Red brick with limestone dressings. Half-hipped, plain clay
tile roof with finials; parapeted, coped end-gables terminated
by rectangular brick stacks with heavily corbelled tops, all
with pots. Timber balustrade with diagonal bracing above to
centre first-floor window. Small decorative terracotta panels
to gables of bay windows. Inscribed plaques to Upper Tything
elevation in stucco within wooden frame and stone.
PLAN: Double-depth, central hall houses arranged around
3-sides of a lawned courtyard. Similar plan form and
elevations throughout; one block (Block No.3) to the north,
two (Nos 4 and 5) to the east, and two (Nos 1 and 2) to the
west with central entrance bay accessing courtyard.
Each block has the same symmetrical facade with a central
doorway flanked by full-height bays surmounted by gables. The
principal elevation of Blocks 1 and 2 faces out onto Upper
Tything whereas Blocks 3, 4 and 5 face inwards to the
courtyard. 2 storeys. 3 first-floor windows. Stone detailing
includes continuous sill and head bands to windows on both
floors, that to the head of the ground-floor windows
incorporating a projecting string course; gable copings;
finials to apex of bay gables; voussoirs to arch to courtyard
on Block 1 and 2.
3-light mullion windows with ovolo-moulded frame throughout,
those to the ground-floor with transom; each centre light is a
side-hung casement; with night-vent over on ground-floor.
Centre first-floor window has a dropped sill and is slightly
recessed behind a low balustrade with turned balusters;
diagonal braces to upper corners of window recess. Dwarf walls
approx. 0.6m. high with copings partially enclose area of
blue-brick paving to bolection moulded 6-panel entrance door;
overlight and sidelights down to level of sill-band; leaded
panes to overlight and some transom lights.
Blocks 1 and 2 onto Upper Tything are linked by a slightly
recessed entrance bay giving access via a wide, open-archway
to the courtyard. Voussoirs to arch with plaque above
inscribed 'Erected by the Six Governors and Supervisors of the
Free School and Almshouses' and dated 1878. Above this is a
coving of 4 stucco panels within a moulded frame; the outer
panels carry in relief the ancient (Quartered shield with
castle) and modern (Shield with a fess and 3 black pears) Coat
of Arms of the City; the centre pair of panels bear the date
1561 and the inscription 'Semper fidelis mutare sperno.' The
corresponding area of wall above the arch on the rear
elevation is in diagonal basket-weave pattern brickwork.
Shallow single- and 2-storey wings to all rear elevations
under plain clay tile roofs; C20 fenestration.
INTERIOR: not inspected.
SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: Wrought-iron gate and boundary wall of
red brick with triangular blue brick coping to north; pair of
wrought-iron gates and red brick gate piers with stone details
to the west. To the north approximately 8 metres of 1.5 metre
high wall links Block 1 and 2 with Block 3; pierced by
pedestrian gate of simple design; a further length of wall
runs due east from Block 3 for approx. 15m. To the west a pair
of ornamental scrolled gates are hung on brick piers with
roll-moulded arrises; stone plinth and pyramidal cap with
dentilled frieze; The gates and piers have been relocated;
this and the later low coped wall and railings to either side
probably relate to the widening of the road in the first-half
of the C20.
HISTORICAL NOTE: 1561 is the date of the Charter granted by
Queen Elizabeth I which refounded what became the Royal
Grammar School. It also provided for the appointment of the
Six Masters to be Governors and supervisors of the 'Free
School and Almose houses of the Cittie of Worcester.' Pevsner
(B.o.E.) gives the architect as Gibbons of a local
partnership, Lord and Parker. Research done at Birmingham
University by Richard Lockett indicates the Almshouses to be
an example of the early work of Aston Webb. (Buildings of
England: Pevsner N: Worcestershire: Harmondsworth: 1968-1985:

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