History in Structure

Aldringham Court

A Grade II Listed Building in Aldringham cum Thorpe, Suffolk

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Latitude: 52.1893 / 52°11'21"N

Longitude: 1.5766 / 1°34'35"E

OS Eastings: 644560

OS Northings: 260592

OS Grid: TM445605

Mapcode National: GBR XQP.PDT

Mapcode Global: VHM7X.87TJ

Plus Code: 9F435HQG+PJ

Entry Name: Aldringham Court

Listing Date: 20 May 2005

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1393143

English Heritage Legacy ID: 501805

ID on this website: 101393143

Location: Aldringham, East Suffolk, IP16

County: Suffolk

District: East Suffolk

Civil Parish: Aldringham cum Thorpe

Traditional County: Suffolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Suffolk

Church of England Parish: Aldringham with Thorpe St Andrew

Church of England Diocese: St.Edmundsbury and Ipswich

Tagged with: Building

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79/0/10021 Aldringham Court

Large house, now care home for the elderly. 1912-14 (dated 1914). By Cecil H. Lay for himself. Rendered and colourwashed brick with brick dressings, elaborate plinth. Plain tile roofs behind a low parapet and various striped brick stacks. Edwardian eclectic or art nouveau style with curving brick-coped gables which have fine cornices either side a curved apex, and curved iron spikes to the bottom corners, pargetted fruit and leaf drops and roundels, and curving balconies. Double H plan with further gabled wing to rear right. 2 storeys and attics. The E-plan entrance front is a 7-window range at first floor of late C20 upvc windows in original openings. Lintels and sills in alternating tones give a striped effect.Central projecting 2-storey entrance porch has downward curving hood over the part-glazed panelled front door which is up a flight of steps. Facing gables on either end have first floor curved balconies in front of windows and panels of chequer tiles below the balconies. These gable ends have brick quoins with cornice tops giving the impression of corner pilasters. This treatment is applied in a similar form to the principal corners and projecting gables of the house and again a simpler decoration to the central porch element and to the lesser projecting gables of the house. On the right side the rear wing gable has a large plaster cartouche with date AD 1914. The rear of this wing has a triple-arched decorative panel. The late C20 single-storey rear extensions are not of special architectural interest.

INTERIOR. This was altered in 1989 when the house was divided into 4 flats and the original galleried staircase hall divided up. Further alterations have taken place but some rooms retain their original shape and there survives a fireplace in the reception room to the far left of the front door.

HISTORY. Cecil Howard Lay (1885-1956) was born in Aldringham. He was articled to the well-known Suffolk architect JS Corder. He was at the Architectural Association 1907-11 when he studied in France and Belgium. He had his own practice from 1912, was ARIBA that year and FRIBA 1924. Antiquarian, poet and noted painter, Lay designed buildings in Aldringham (eg The Pantiles, q.v.) and elsewhere and was responsible for some of the town-planning of Leiston nearby, as well as for the restoration of Aldeburgh Parish Church (q.v.).
Aldringham Court, the architect's own house, and originally known as Raidsend, is probably his finest creation, and is of special interest for the survival, little altered, of the exterior, an imaginative essay in an unusual art nouveau style with much fine-quality decoration.

Brown, Haward and Kindred, Dictionary of Architects of Suffolk Buildings, 1800-1914, 1991, p.137-8.
RIBA biography file.
Who's Who in Architecture, 1914, 1923 and 1926.
Sandon, E., Suffolk Houses.

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