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HER Number:MDV23627
Name:Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth

Summary

The central entrance block, flanked by long wings which terminate in asymmetrical pavilions, was built between 1899-1905. A rear centre wing was added at right-angles to the north circa 1914.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 875 519
Map Sheet:SX85SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishDartmouth
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishTOWNSTAL

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX85SE/79
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II*): 387216

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • COLLEGE (XIX to XX - 1801 AD to 2000 AD (Between))

Full description

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

Built on a site to the north of Mount Boone Farm.


Ordnance Survey, 1891, 127SE (Cartographic). SDV341256.


Ordnance Survey, 1904 - 1906, Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map (Cartographic). SDV325644.

Map object based on this source.


Ordnance Survey, 1938, 127SE. Revision of 1904 with additions in 1938. Provisional Edition (Cartographic). SDV337477.


Department of Environment, 1972, Dartmouth, 2 (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV155627.


Weddell, P. J. + Turton, S. D., 1993, Archaeological Assessment of Dartmouth STW (Old Mill Scheme), 4 (Report - Assessment). SDV341209.


Clamp, A., 1994, Dartmouth and Kingswear during the Second World War, 11 (Monograph). SDV341255.

Wartime use of Royal Naval College (HMS Dartmouth III, renamed HMS Effingham in 1943) outlined. Cadets evacuated to Cheshire by 1943 and college in use as base for Combined Operations Forces. US Navy made it their headquarters in December 1943.


Freeman, R., 1995, The History of the Castle Hotel Dartmouth, 25 (Pamphlet). SDV340278.

Foundation stone laid by the king in 1902.


Collings, A. G., 2001, Archaeological Assessment of Proposed Dartmouth Sewage Treatment Scheme, 7 (Report - Assessment). SDV336229.


Exeter Archaeology, 2002, Archaeological Assessment of Proposed Development at Dart Marina, Dartmouth, Devon, 8, site 20 (Report - Assessment). SDV344566.


White, B., 2008, War and the Home Front: Devon in the First World War, 1914-1918, 10 (Post-Graduate Thesis). SDV356177.

Royal Naval War College built between 1902 and 1905, replacing the old hulks that had been in place since the 1860s.


Ordnance Survey, 2013, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV350786.

Map object based on this source.


English Heritage, 2013, National Heritage List for England (National Heritage List for England). SDV350785.

Britannia Royal Naval College, main complex and attached walls on the north side of College Way. Training college for naval officers. Built between 1899-1905 by Sir Aston Webb; foundation stone laid 1902 by Edward VII. Addition of circa 1914. Flemish bond brick with Portland ashlar dressings; slate roofs; stacks with brick and stone-dressed shafts. Walls of granite and local limestone ashlar. Wrennian in style, Palladian in layout. Plan: Central entrance block flanked by long wings which terminate in asymmetrical pavilions. The wings contain offices to the front, with an axial corridor behind giving access to the gun room in the south-west pavilion (which also contains the ward room), and the Anglican chapel in the north-east pavilion (which also contains the captain's house). A rear centre wing at right-angles contains the great hall, flanked by classrooms, accommodation and service blocks. The circa 1914 addition is built to the rear (north-west). Parade ground in front of and below the main range has an imperial stair rising to the entrance block and is flanked by curving drives. Exterior: Carved with appropriate Royal Naval motifs including lettering, crowns and projecting carvings of historic ships' prows of different dates. 3 storeys, plus 2 tiers of attics to the entrance block. 37-bay main range plus the pavilions, each associated with a tower, and symmetrical except for the pavilions. 5-bay entrance block, flanked by 3-bay engaged porticos, then the 13-bay wings. Ground floor stone with channelled rustication to the wings, vermiculated to the entrance block; stone mullioned windows with high transoms. Entrance block has deep hipped slate roof, balustraded parapet, stone-banded chimney shafts and stone bands at second-floor sill level and below the parapet. Centre bay broken forward, outer bays flanked by pilasters. Centre bay with composite pilasters and half columns to the upper storeys with a tympanum containing the Royal Arms above and large stone cupola incorporating a clock; central round-headed doorway with a keystone; flanking bays have round-headed windows on the ground floor, upper windows flanked by giant stone pilasters. Outer bays have paired 2-light ground-floor windows divided by mullions with heavy vermiculated rustication. All first-floor windows have broken pediments: below the outer windows, panels carved with the names of Drake, Hawke, Howe and Nelson. Under the parapet the inscription: "It is on the navy under the good providence of God that our wealth, prosperity and peace depend". 3-bay, 2 tier porticos flank the entrance block, the rusticated bases of the columns engaged to single-storey blocks with parapets. Outer bays of the 13-bay wings have wide pilasters, the bays to the centre of the range each with a broken pediment with carving, cupolas, and a canted bay on the ground floor; the bays at the end each with a balustraded parapet and canted ground-floor bay. Centre bay of each wing contains a round-headed doorway and is flanked by pilasters which rise above the roofline. The other bays are regular and divided by stone pilasters with an entablature at second-floor level: 3-light windows on the ground floor; 2-light on the first floor; second-floor windows 2-light with broken pediments. The right-hand pavilion (the captain's house) is 2 storeys and attic, in the same style, set forward from the main range with an entrance on the inner return. The house has domed corner projections and an asymmetrical entrance elevation with a grand pedimented doorway. The chapel tower, with a domed roof, rises to its rear. The left-hand pavilion contains the ward room, with a tower and a domed roof beyond. The ward room is single-storey with a roof hipped to the front with a balustraded parapet; 3-bay front with pilasters and massive windows with 2 tiers of transoms. The parade ground in front and below the main range has round-headed arches with keystones in the terrace wall. The other elevations of the main college buildings are a plainer version of the front and the circa 1914 block is designed to match. Interior: Partially inspected. The galleried great hall is 4 bays with a half bay at each end; open timber roof with moulded transverse stone arches with oculi in the gables, the trusses are supported on wall plates with timber brackets carved with naval devices in the centre of each bay. The galleries bow out in the centre of each bay with a wrought-iron balustrade. The northwest end wall has 4 tall round-headed slit windows above a central niche and, in a recess below, a full-size 1910 white marble statue of Edward VII on a plinth signed Hamo Thorneycroft. The chapel has a 4-bay nave with a tie-beam truss roof joined by longitudinal timbers; vestigial aisles. Round-headed chancel arch; barrel-vaulted chancel roof with a transverse stone arch; 5-light traceried east window; east wall with chequerboard frieze flanking the east window and panels of Italian marble on either side of the 7-bay carved reredos. The west end has an internal 3-bay narthex with a gallery over. Kempe Studio windows of 1907-11 (Pevsner). The Gun Room, to the rear of the ward room, is galleried at the southwest end and has a barrel-vaulted roof with transverse ribs decorated with crowns, roses, thistles and the Royal Arms. At each end, the upper half of the wall is filled with a massive 12-light window with 2 moulded king mullions and a transom; high-set round-headed windows to each side. Chandeliers in the form of sailing vessels, glass in windows incorporating dolphins in the leading, etc. Ward Room not inspected. The corridor that runs between the Gun Room and Chapel is said to be one of the longest in any European building. It has a vaulted roof and a dado of glazed bricks. History: In 1863 the Admiralty stationed HMS Britannia in the Dart as a training ship for naval cadets. In 1865 she was joined by HMS Hindustan. By 1875 it was decided to build a land-based college, but the land was not acquired until 1896. Webb began work on the terraces for the main college in 1898 but, when 2 cadets died of influenza on Britannia, the sanatorium was built first. Edward VII laid the foundation stone of the college in 1902. The Hindustan was towed down to Plymouth in 1905 but the Britannia stayed until 1916. (Freeman, Ray: Dartmouth and its Neighbours: Phillimore: 1990-: P.156-8/P.177-8; The Buildings of England: Pevsner, Nikolaus: Devon: London: 1989-: P.325).


Waterhouse, R., Unknown, Dartmouth Conservation Area: Archaeology, 10 (Un-published). SDV355585.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV155627List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1972. Dartmouth. Historic Houses Register. A4 Comb Bound. 2.
SDV325644Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1904 - 1906. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV336229Report - Assessment: Collings, A. G.. 2001. Archaeological Assessment of Proposed Dartmouth Sewage Treatment Scheme. Exeter Archaeology Report. 01.72. A4 Stapled + Digital. 7.
SDV337477Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1938. 127SE. Revision of 1904 with additions in 1938. Provisional Edition. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 6 inch Map. Map (Paper).
SDV340278Pamphlet: Freeman, R.. 1995. The History of the Castle Hotel Dartmouth. Dartmouth History Research Group Papers. 14. A5 Paperback. 25.
SDV341209Report - Assessment: Weddell, P. J. + Turton, S. D.. 1993. Archaeological Assessment of Dartmouth STW (Old Mill Scheme). Exeter Museums Archaeological Field Unit Report. 93.27. A4 Stapled + Digital. 4.
SDV341255Monograph: Clamp, A.. 1994. Dartmouth and Kingswear during the Second World War. Dartmouth and Kingswear during the Second World War. Paperback Volume. 11.
SDV341256Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1891. 127SE. Ordnance Survey 6 inch map. Map (Paper).
SDV344566Report - Assessment: Exeter Archaeology. 2002. Archaeological Assessment of Proposed Development at Dart Marina, Dartmouth, Devon. Exeter Archaeology Report. 02.28. A4 Stapled + Digital. 8, site 20.
SDV350785National Heritage List for England: English Heritage. 2013. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital.
SDV350786Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.
SDV355585Un-published: Waterhouse, R.. Unknown. Dartmouth Conservation Area: Archaeology. Digital. 10.
SDV356177Post-Graduate Thesis: White, B.. 2008. War and the Home Front: Devon in the First World War, 1914-1918. McMaster University. Digital. 10.

Associated Monuments

MDV55617Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stone, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55607Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55608Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55610Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55611Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55612Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55613Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55614Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55615Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55616Related to: Admiralty Boundary Stones, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV55609Related to: Former Cricket Ground, Townstal (Monument)
MDV61755Related to: Hayward Tyler Vertical Steam Engine (Monument)
MDV55618Related to: HM Naval Establishment, Sandquay (Monument)
MDV55605Related to: Hospital at Britannia Royal Naval College (Building)
MDV55604Related to: Mount Boone Farm (Monument)
MDV105918Related to: Park and Gardens at Britannia Naval College (Park/Garden)
MDV55606Related to: Pavilion at Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV65820Related to: Pumping Station, Sandquay (Monument)
MDV65822Related to: Reservoir, Britannia Royal Naval College (Monument)
MDV53853Related to: Sandquay Quarry (Monument)
MDV56924Related to: Training Ships at Dartmouth (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4680 - Archaeological Assessment of Proposed Development at Dart Marina, Dartmouth, Devon

Date Last Edited:Nov 26 2014 9:52AM