History in Structure

32 Watermoor Road

A Grade II Listed Building in Cirencester, Gloucestershire

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Latitude: 51.7116 / 51°42'41"N

Longitude: -1.9641 / 1°57'50"W

OS Eastings: 402575

OS Northings: 201429

OS Grid: SP025014

Mapcode National: GBR 3QY.N81

Mapcode Global: VHB2Q.X70Q

Plus Code: 9C3WP26P+J9

Entry Name: 32 Watermoor Road

Listing Date: 11 March 2020

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1467655

ID on this website: 101467655

Location: Watermoor, Cotswold, Gloucestershire, GL7

County: Gloucestershire

District: Cotswold

Civil Parish: Cirencester

Built-Up Area: Cirencester

Traditional County: Gloucestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Gloucestershire

Tagged with: Clergy house


A parsonage, in Tudor Gothic style, built in 1898 to designs by Waller and Sons of Gloucester. An attached garage added in the 1960s is not included.


A parsonage, in Tudor Gothic style, built in 1898 to designs by Waller and Sons of Gloucester. An attached garage added in the 1960s is not included.

Rock-faced limestone, with ashlar limestone dressings and rock-faced stone stacks; plain clay tile roofs.

The house is on a T-plan, with a large main range and rear wings. To the north is an attached service court.

The building is of two storeys and attic, with its main elevation to the east. The house is built from rock-faced stone squared and brought to course, on a similarly-constructed plinth with one offset. The deep roofs have slightly swept eaves. The fenestration is mainly stone mullioned and stone mullioned and transomed windows, those to the ground floor with relieving arches over. The main elevation, to the west, is of three broad bays. The central, entrance bay, which has a buttress to the left with two offsets, breaks forward slightly, and rises to a gable at the attic. The gable has high, coped verges carried on moulded kneelers. The entrance is set to the left of the bay, a four-centred-arched opening with moulded arch to an open porch with an ogee hood mould with elaborate scrolling foliate stops, surmounted by an attached cross, and three carved floral roundels, all by Henry Frith of Gloucester. Set back within the entrance is a multi-paned, half-glazed internal storm porch, with diamond-pattern leaded glazing and coloured margins, and panelling below; the entrance door is similarly half-glazed, and set in the right return. To the right of the doorway is an arched transomed window. The first-floor window is mullioned and transomed, and set high in the gable is a single light with a flat-arched drip mould. The moulded coping to the gable is surmounted by a moulded finial. A stack with moulded capping rises to the right of the gable. The flanking bays each have a four-light mullioned and transomed window to the ground floor, with relieving arches. A moulded string course divides the ground and first floors. The first-floor windows are set under the eaves, and have two lights, with stone mullions. The left return has a broad gable with cross wing extending to the left. The ground floor has a canted bay window with parapet to the right and windows of one, two and three lights elsewhere, the string course continuing around the building and terminating as a hood mould over the left window. High in the gable is a timber box window of three lights, above which the apex is hung in fishscale clay tiles. The right return elevation has a four-centred-arched doorway to the right, giving access for parishioners to the parson’s office. The half-glazed panelled door has a shaped overlight with leaded glazing, and a matching side panel. The windows are similar to those on the left return, and the apex is treated identically, with a timber box window and tile hanging. A cross wing is set back behind the plane of the gable end.

A screen wall with timber gate extends northwards from the corner of the main range, with a parapet wall with ramped end, screening the service court. The service court has brick walls to the west and north sides and modern uPVC window to one range. The other range includes an open-fronted store and privy, under flat roofs covered in bitumen felt. The rear elevation is irregular, with two cross-wings each of two storeys extending forward from the main range, with a two-storey outshut between them, below which is a canted half-bay porch with uPVC entrance door, and a single-storey kitchen range extending the left-hand cross-wing. Stacks rise from the junctions of the wings and the main range, with a wide, three-light dormer set on the roof slope between them. The windows in this elevation have been replaced in uPVC, in the original openings, roughly replicating the pattern of the earlier glazing. To the left of the kitchen bay extends the rear wall of the service range, with one new window opening housing a uPVC window, and one retained narrow single-light window with arched top and leaded glazing.

The interior retains its four-panelled doors, moulded architraves, varied fireplaces and skirting boards, and picture rails remain in the principal rooms. The windows other than those to the rear elevations have deeply chamfered stone mullions and transoms internally, housing metal casements, with decorative Gothic window furniture; they also have secondary glazing. The ground floor has a pinwheel plan, with principal rooms and main stair ranged off a central entrance hall. The hall has arched timber openings to the porch and stair, the timberwork panelled and moulded. The floor is laid with herringbone red tile, with polychrome Minton tile margins. To the right is the former curate’s office and study, which has an original fire surround, with recent black and white hearth tiling. This room is accessed from the main hall, and also from the secondary hall, which was constructed as the parishioners’ waiting room; this has a herringbone woodblock floor, and is screened from the family area by a glazed partition and door with obscure glass. A later doorway in the opposite wall of the parishioners’ hall gives access to a small cloakroom, originally a pantry. Off the opposite side of the main hall is the drawing room, which has a canted bay window and classical fireplace with replacement tile inserts. To the rear of the hall, the rooms in the rear wings are accessed through doors set at a 45 degree angle at either side of the arched opening to the enclosed main stair, over which is a moulded timber arch. To the rear of the drawing room is the sitting room, originally the dining room, which has a timber fire surround with turned details to the shelves, and a shallow arched niche to right of the chimney breast. A door leads to the rear hall, which is floored in quarry tile, and includes the obscure glazed screen to the parishioners’ hall, at the foot of the secondary stair, which has plain stick balusters and a square-section newel post with ball finial and lambs’ tongue stops; the hall leads back into the kitchen. This room retains its high fire surround with mantelshelf carried on plain curved brackets. The fixtures and finishes are modern. The kitchen leads into the utility room within the service court, originally the scullery, off which is the pantry, which retains its slate shelving. Both have quarry tiled floors.

The main and secondary stairs, which rise parallel to each other, both arrive at a common half-landing, where off-set windows light the stairwell, and off which is a bathroom at mezzanine level. The stair then turns through 90 degrees for the last half-flight, which has newels matching those on the secondary stair, and turned and stick balusters which continue to form a balustrade on the galleried landing. The first floor rooms retain all their fire surrounds; these are mainly a single timber design with moulded surround and recessed panels below the mantelshelves, but one includes a delicate foliate moulding and curved edges in a broadly Art Nouveau style. The attic rooms have exposed purlins and struts, and two of the three rooms have small cast-iron fireplaces with decorative panels and moulded shelves.


The Parsonage was built in 1898 to house the incumbent for the adjacent Church of the Holy Trinity, Watermoor (listed Grade II*). The church had been built in 1847-51 by Sir George Gilbert Scott, and altered by the architect in 1878. The priest in charge was initially housed in an existing cottage on a plot to the north-west, still known as the Old Parsonage (30 Watermoor Road). By 1895, it was clear that larger accommodation would be needed for the curate, and initially, architects were approached for plans to extend the existing cottage. However, correspondence and drawings preserved in the Gloucestershire Archives (see SELECTED SOURCES) show that the scheme proposed would have been too expensive, and instead, the committee for the new vicarage resolved to build anew. In 1898, the new parsonage was constructed immediately to the north of the church. The building was designed by Waller and Sons of Gloucester. Frederick Sandham Waller, FRIBA, (1822-1905) was an architect and antiquarian from Gloucester, who was resident architect to the Dean and Chapter of Gloucester Cathedral. He was articled to Thomas Fulljames and later his partner. Waller was joined in practice in 1873 by his son, Frederick William Waller (1848-1933). The firm worked extensively in Gloucestershire, primarily but not exclusively on ecclesiastical commissions, including the renovation of a number of churches in the Diocese of Gloucester.

Several schemes for the new building were proposed and discarded before the eventual design was agreed upon in April 1898. Further modifications, in particular the siting of the secondary stair and the addition of a canted rear porch and doorway, with attendant alteration to the stair windows, were made in a series of drawings up to August 1898, when construction appears to have begun. The contractors were Saunders and Sons of Cirencester.

The Parsonage included accommodation for the incumbent and his family, an office and parishioners’ waiting room, accessible to parishioners through a dedicated entrance, along with a service court and small outbuilding, was complete by 1899. The building remained in its original use until 2019. Since its completion there have been very few alterations, the most notable being the replacement of most of the windows to the rear elevation in uPVC.

Reasons for Listing

32 Watermoor Road, formerly the parsonage, built in 1898 to designs by Waller and Sons, is listed at Grade II, for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:
* as a good Tudor Gothic design with neat detailing, well-executed in materials of high quality;
* for its planning, which allowed complete separation of the areas in which the parson received parishioners and conducted business from the family accommodation;
* its interior scheme, including well-detailed and crisply-moulded timber work, coloured glass and fittings of quality in design and execution, remains very little altered, and the functions and relationships of the public and private areas remains clearly legible;
* the exterior is little altered apart from the replacement of the rear windows, and this does not outweigh its claims to special interest.

Historic interest:
* as part of the development of the suburb of Watermoor in the later C19;
* as an example of the planning and design of vicarages in the mid- to late C19 which showed the influence of the Oxford Movement in renewed emphasis on the status and dignity of the clergy.

Group value:
* with the Grade II*-listed Church of the Holy Trinity, to the south, which the parsonage was built to serve.

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