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Old Court

A Grade II* Listed Building in Caerwys, Flintshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.2464 / 53°14'46"N

Longitude: -3.3081 / 3°18'29"W

OS Eastings: 312808

OS Northings: 372949

OS Grid: SJ128729

Mapcode National: GBR 5ZBW.LZ

Mapcode Global: WH76Q.4NZM

Plus Code: 9C5R6MWR+HQ

Entry Name: Old Court

Listing Date: 22 October 1952

Last Amended: 19 July 2002

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 22774

Building Class: Domestic

Location: Fronting the road approximately 40m E of the junction with North and South Streets.

County: Flintshire

Community: Caerwys

Community: Caerwys

Built-Up Area: Caerwys

Traditional County: Flintshire

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Caerwys

History

Possibly of medieval origin and the site of a court of the Welsh princes. If so it was rebuilt in the C15 by the Mostyn family whose manorial courts were held there. Until 1672 it was a place of meeting of the courts of Great Sessions, and subsequently was used as Judges' Lodgings for the Assize Court. It remained a magistrate's court until 1869 when the new Sessions House in Water Street was built. It was subsequently converted and the 1871 and 1899 Ordnance Surveys show it to have been the Cross Foxes Public House. The present building is early C17 in origin, encompassing the main 2-unit range with rear stair projection and rear wing, with later W wing and projection at the rear of the N wing, latterly housing the court room. The fenestration to the front was altered in the early C19 and then was remodelled with roughcast and barge boards after it had been converted to a public house.

Exterior

A large 2½-storey house, the original core of which comprises a main range facing the street, with gabled stair projection behind to the centre and rear wing to its L, forming an approximate L-shaped plan, to which have been added a lower parallel wing to the L (W) side of the front and a projection behind the rear wing housing the court room, giving the whole building an approximate T-shaped plan. The main range has a late C19 front of roughcast walls painted white, channelled in the lower storey and scribed above with rusticated quoins, slate roof with large rendered C17 stack R of centre and a C19 R end stack, and crested ridge tiles, while the rear wing has a brick end stack. The lower storey has 4 bays with the entrance to the centre-R. This has a porch on timber posts and replaced door. The other ground-floor windows are late C19 metal-frames with thin glazing bars, but in earlier openings, and have rusticated lintels with heads to the keystones. The upper storey has a sill band on a frieze of small consoles, incorporating five 4-pane horned sash windows below a corbelled eaves band. Three equally placed gabled dormers have 4-pane horned sash windows under head mouldings, while the gables project on consoles and have fretted barge boards and pendant finials. The R gable end has similar barge boards and finial, and bands continuous with the front sill and eaves bands.

To its L is the lower 2-storey wing, which has a similar roughcast front to the main range. In the lower storey are 3 windows with thin metal glazing bars also similar to the main range, while in the upper storey are similar windows L and R carried above the eaves under gablets. The L gable end has a segmental-headed first-floor doorway. The rear has 2 inserted pairs of French doors, wood-framed casement carried above the eaves upper R and small-2-light casement upper L. The 2-window W side wall of the N wing has 2-light mullioned windows with hood moulds, except lower R which has an inserted wood-framed casement in the original opening, which retains its hood mould.

On the E side of the rear of the main range is a triple small-pane horizontal-sliding sash window in the lower storey, immediately R of which is the stair projection, which has a segmental-headed boarded door in its E wall. In the N wall is a 3-light mullioned window with hood mould in the lower storey and a small window to its L, above which is a horizontal-sliding sash window to the upper landing. The middle landing has a 3-light small-pane E window with wooden mullions (but stone mullions are retained on the inside). The N wing retains a 2-light mullioned upper-storey window, while in the lower storey is a triple horizontal-sliding sash window to the R and a replaced door to the L under a segmental head. In its gable end, above the lower N projection, is a single attic window in a dressed stone surround L of centre, and a similar upper-storey window to the L side. Both have weathered hood moulds. The N projection is C19 but has mainly altered details. In its E wall it has inserted garage doors under a steel lintel with double-boarded doors, flanked on the L side by a brick lean-to and on the R by a segmental-headed 2-light casement. The upper storey has 2 inserted windows below the eaves. In the N gable end are external stone steps, with treads renewed in concrete, to a C20 boarded door. The NE angle has voussoirs of a stone arch to a projection further N, while the NW angle is attached to a separate property (Y Bwthyn).

Interior

The interior has a lobby-entry plan with central back-to-back fireplaces to the principal rooms R and L. From the entrance is an unusual tunnel-vaulted passage beneath the combined chimney leading to the rear stair projection. The room to the L of the entrance has a timber lintel to the fireplace and 2 cross beams. A cross beam in the R-hand room has an ogee stop. The C17 full-height open-well stair has turned balusters and newels. The attic has a 4-bay roof, of which the trusses have tie and collar beams. Openings through the trusses, which formerly held partitions, have shallow triangular heads. The attic has a stone fireplace with a rough shelf above it. The N wing has an attic fireplace filled in.

Reasons for Listing

Listed grade II* as an especially well-preserved sub-medieval building retaining original plan and external and internal detail, for its special historical interest as a court house and for its important contribution to the historic character of the town.

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