History in Structure

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Derwen Hall

A Grade II* Listed Building in Derwen, Denbighshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.0546 / 53°3'16"N

Longitude: -3.3547 / 3°21'16"W

OS Eastings: 309298

OS Northings: 351671

OS Grid: SJ092516

Mapcode National: GBR 6Q.CMLP

Mapcode Global: WH77N.FHR4

Entry Name: Derwen Hall

Listing Date: 19 July 1966

Last Amended: 30 October 2000

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 729

Building Class: Domestic

Location: 2 km east of Derwen church.

County: Denbighshire

Town: Ruthin

Community: Derwen

Community: Derwen

Locality: Clawddnewydd

Traditional County: Denbighshire

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Clawdd-newydd

History

Derwen Hall has a main range with decoratively braced timber framing characteristic of the late C16 and a forward wing nearly at right angles in simpler framing. The main range was originally jettied at front and at its left gable but its jetty has been underbuilt at front and the left gable is now faced in stonework two storeys high. The fenestration, the main doorway and internal features suggest a major renovation took place at the end of the C18. The decorative timber framing has been brick-nogged in brickwork matching the colour and texture of the infill brickwork of the wing. The wing contains the kitchen of the house, with a large original chimney. The siting of the wing is unusual, returning forwards from the main range. As the decorative framing of the main range extends across the link section, it is likely the two ranges are contemporary.

The house was the family home of eight generations of the Price family, ending in the Rev. John Price born in the mid/late C18; this line may well have originated in the late C16 when the main range of the house was built. In view of the near-detachment of the wing from the main range and its nearly equal size, a semi-independent domestic function (the unit system) has been suggested as an explanation of the layout; but in the absence of family history research this is only hypothetical.

Exterior

A large two-storeyed house consisting of a main range facing south east and a secondary range at right angles and slightly stepped down, joined corner to corner with the main range. The main range upper storey front elevation is of three windows regularly spaced in decorative timber framing. The style of framing features large square panels with three diagonal braces in each panel, forming lozenges or chevrons. Remnants of original pierced panelling survive below the windows in the upper storey, relating to the original windows which were evidently wider and less tall. Below this the underbuilt masonry of the ground storey has three windows differently spaced and the main doorway off centre to the right. The other sides of the main range are in stone apart from the roof gable at left and a jettied staircase enclosure at rear. The chimneys and the other gable end are rendered.

In the front elevation the fenestration consists of C18 12-pane hornless sash windows both above and below. There is a six-panel main door with batwing fanlight.

The wing is in utilitarian timber framing with small top-braces, and numerous members are missing. It is now infilled in brick. The main elevation of this wing facing south-west has C19 mullion-and-transom windows, four above and three below. The right gable is also timber framed, the upper storey and roof gable in square panels, the lower storey rebuilt in modern brickwork. A full-length lean-to extension has been added to the north-east side, rendered, with a catslide roof.

Interior

In the main range the main room to the west has a dragon beam and large beams and joists with stepped tongued stops. The partition between this room and the entrance lobby is a later insertion; its door, and the main front door are late C18, six-panelled, in oak. A main beam at the rear has been cut to insert an C18 staircase (recently re-assembled).

The wing contains a large kitchen with double longitudinal beams; large fireplace with bread oven at left. A door off this kitchen is painted with the word 'dairy'.

Reasons for Listing

Listed at Grade II* as an exceptionally fine late C16 house with good decorative timber framing; unusual arrangement of main dwelling and secondary range; good-quality C18 and C19 detail throughout.

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