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HER Number:MDV13729
Name:Wonwell Court, Kingston


The earliest documentary reference to Wonwell Court is in 1245. The present house, however, is of 16th century origiin with 18th and 19th century additions and alterations.


Grid Reference:SX 629 475
Map Sheet:SX64NW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishKingston
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishKINGSTON

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX64NW/10
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II*): 99637
  • SHINE Candidate (Yes)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • MANSION HOUSE (Early Medieval to XXI - 1066 AD to 2009 AD (Between))

Full description

Lysons, D. + Lysons, S., 1822, Magna Britannica, 305 (Monograph). SDV323771.

Ordnance Survey, 1880-1899, First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map (Cartographic). SDV336179.

'Wonwell Court Remains of a Mansion' marked on 1880s-1890s 25 inch Ordnance Survey map.

Gover, J. E. B. + Mawer, A. + Stenton, F. M., 1931, The Place-Names of Devon: Part One, 279 (Monograph). SDV1312.

The earliest documentary reference to Wonwell Court is 'Womgwylle' is 1245.

Department of Environment, 1960, Kingsbridge RD, 14-15 (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV323346.

The present Wonwell Court is a quadrangular group of buildings of 16th century origin, refashioned in the 18th century. One round-headed doorway survives from the Tudor house. The adjacent stone barn is 16th century with 17th century additions and an 18th century roof.

Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England, 1976, Monuments Threatened or Destroyed, 12 (Monograph). SDV342667.

Alcock, N. W., 1981, Cruck Construction: An Introduction and Catalogue, 113 (Report - non-specific). SDV342504.

Short curved feet cruck and short upper jointed cruck recorded (citing P. Child).

English Heritage, 2009, Kingston (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV342668.

Wonwell Court. Large farmhouse. 16th, 18th and 19th centuries. Coursed slate-stone rubble or rendered walling, slate roofs. A complex building in which an 18th century facade conceals an earlier building, perhaps an open hall, or a three-room cross-passage L-plan house, to which was added in the 19th century a very large wing on the south-east side to give an overall U-plan with an extended wing on the north-east side. Much of the earliest structure, including its roof, was enclosed by later reconstructions.
Entrance front is two storeys, four windows, all 24-pane early 18th century sashes, to splayed voussoirs and plain string, ground floor, and string to deep frieze and bracketted eaves at first floor. In bay three a six-panel moulded 18th century door to eight-pane overlight in granite 'Tuscan' pilasters carrying a shell hood on brackets, with coat of arms. Extending right on this front a section of wall to a brick
stack. Return, left has larger double 15-pane sash in rendering and plain end gable. Right return has a 20-pane sash and two two-light at first floor, three-light at ground floor, and a large rendered stack at right end; beyond this a one-storey kitchen with a further stack. The back has a one and a half-storey extension with low-pitched slate roof, with three half-dormers in two+three+three lights over two three-light to segmental heads, doors to left and right. The principal stack to the hall/saloon emerges centrally half-way up the slope. The later wing retains various sashes and casements.
Interior: entrance hall has dado height fielded panelling doors with moulded architraves, six-panel fielded doors. Small corner room to right, with diagonally set fireplace in corner also has dado panelling, including deep embrasures to windows. The main saloon or hall, to left, has full height fielded panelling, glazed cupboard with fluted pilasters, fine dentil cornice; three deep plastered beams. Round-arched chamfered brick opening gives to service wing, has broad plank door on strap hinges. Victorian baluster stair-
case. One principal bedroom has bolection mould wood fire surround. Various fielded panel doors. Principal floor over saloon is double construction with 'suspended' ceiling.
Roof to main 18th century reconstruction is later 19th century king post trusses, but these are set independently above the complete 16th century roof in six trusses to two purlins and chamfered arched bracing to central 'stop'. All joints pegged and numbered. No evidence of wind bracing. Principals halved at ridge, no ridgepiece. The service wing has, at lower level than principal roof, five trusses with cambered collars, all members pegged and numbered.
Date Listed: 25/10/1951. Other details: LBS No 99637.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV1312Monograph: Gover, J. E. B. + Mawer, A. + Stenton, F. M.. 1931. The Place-Names of Devon: Part One. The Place-Names of Devon: Part One. VIII. A5 Hardback. 279.
SDV323346List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1960. Kingsbridge RD. Historic Houses Register. Unknown. 14-15.
SDV323771Monograph: Lysons, D. + Lysons, S.. 1822. Magna Britannica. Magna Britannica: A Concise Topographical Account of The Several Counties o. 6: Devonshire. Unknown. 305.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV342504Report - non-specific: Alcock, N. W.. 1981. Cruck Construction: An Introduction and Catalogue. Council for British Archaeology Research Report. 42. Photocopy. 113.
SDV342667Monograph: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. 1976. Monuments Threatened or Destroyed. Unknown. 12.
SDV342668List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: English Heritage. 2009. Kingston. Historic Houses Register. Website.

Associated Monuments

MDV109819Related to: A pond northwest of Wonwell Court (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Jun 13 2019 6:27PM