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HER Number:MDV4742
Name:1-3 Church Cottages, Thurlestone


Row of three 16th century cottages, formerly the Church House at the east end and the Poor House to the west.


Grid Reference:SX 676 430
Map Sheet:SX64SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishThurlestone
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishTHURLESTONE

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX64SE/23
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II): 100864

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CHURCH HOUSE (XVI to Post Medieval - 1501 AD to 1750 AD (Between))

Full description

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, SX64SE14 & 16 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV170689.

16C with rubble walls and stacks. Buttress at front bears heraldic shield (citing DoE).

Hingeston-Randolph, F. C., 1906-7, The Church House, Thurleston, 180-2 (Article in Serial). SDV170684.

The Church House, Thurlestone, is built of stone and is roofed partly with thatch and partly with slate. There are indications under the thatch that the house was originally wholly roofed with slate. It was turned into a dwelling house at some unknown time by means of wooden partition and some of the old windows were blocked up and new ones were cut out. One of the buttresses of the original building still remains intact. Immediately above it is a figure of an angel holding a shield, on which are sculptured the arms of Ayshford. Half the house was rented for a time by the overseers of the poor as a poorhouse. It was given up again when Kingsbridge Union Workhouse was built. A large table and a form, some pewter plates and a broken bedstead still remain as monuments of this occupation.

Copeland, G. W., 1960, Devonshire Church-Houses: Part 1, 121, 135, Fig 22 (Article in Serial). SDV298102.

Church House; a row of four cottages, well built of local stone. The dwelling at the east seems to have been the actual Church House part, as it projects considerably at the rear and contains a fairly steep and wide curved stone staircase just within the back doorway. The floor level of the living room is lower than that of the foot of the staircase and has to be entered by descending more steps under a doorway with three chamfered and diagonally disposed wooden lintels. At the east end of the room is a plain plank screen, and opposite an open fireplace in a bold projecting breast. The ceiling is supported partly on a large oak beam on a stepped corbel and retains some of its old joists. All these features are absent in the other dwellings in this row. Roof once thatched, but now only the east half of the thatch remains. The walls have a worn moulded stone wall plate and a moulded stone plinth. The original buttress, with a freestone shield, on which are carved the arms of Ayshford; argent between two chevrons sable with 3 ashen keys proper, is of two set offs. The earliest deed with reference to a church house at Thurlestone (unusual in not being anywhere near the church) dates from 1536 and the latest from 1616. A Nicholas Ayshford was one of the joint patrons of the benefice when the land for the building of the house was given. For a time half of it was rented by the overseers of the poor as a poorhouse.

Department of Environment, 1967, Stokenham (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV321701.

Nos 1, 2 & 3 Church Cottages (formerly listed as 1,2 & 3 Church House). Row of 3 houses formerly Church House and poorhouse. Possibly dates from 1536 according to documentary evidence, altered probably in 19C. Slatestone rubble walls. Gable ended slate roof. Rendered probably rubble, axial stack with brick shaft and 2 brick gable end stacks. Plan: the building seems to have functioned both as Church House and Poorhouse and Copeland thinks that the left-hand end was the Church House as it projects at the rear and contains a winding staircase. Now the property is 1 and 2-room cottages. Exterior: 2 storeys. Asymmetrical 4-window front of circa early 20C 2 and 3-light casements some in original chamfered stone window openings. Towards left-hand end are the two 20C stable type doors to Nos 1 & 2 with a similar one to No 3 to the right of centre. Two-thirds of the way up the front wall is a rough string course and it also has a rough plinth. A rubble buttress with 2 offsets at left-hand end has a freestone shield on it carved with the arms of Nicholas Ayshford, one of the joint patrons of the building. Interior: inaccessible at time of survey but a description of the building in c1960 by Copeland mentions wide stone stairs, a corbelled oak beam. plain plank screen and open fireplaces in left-hand end cottage with no such features visible in the others.

Weston, S., 1983, List of Field Monument Warden Visits 1983 (Un-published). SDV343247.

Field Monument Warden visit.

Cherry, B. + Pevsner, N., 1989, The Buildings of England: Devon, 806-7 (Monograph). SDV325629.

In the main street of Thurlestone the church house is a row of four rubble stone cottages with the eastern part probably being the church house itself. It has stone staircase within the back doorway and a stud and panel screen inside.

Oswald, N. C., 1993, The Reverend Peregrine Ilbert, MA., 15 (Article in Serial). SDV325308.

Sketch of c1920 reproduced in Oswald.

Ordnance Survey, 2014, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV355681.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV170684Article in Serial: Hingeston-Randolph, F. C.. 1906-7. The Church House, Thurleston. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 4. 180-2.
SDV170689Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. SX64SE14 & 16. SX64SE.
SDV298102Article in Serial: Copeland, G. W.. 1960. Devonshire Church-Houses: Part 1. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 92. A5 Hardback. 121, 135, Fig 22.
SDV321701List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1967. Stokenham. Historic Houses Register. Website.
SDV325308Article in Serial: Oswald, N. C.. 1993. The Reverend Peregrine Ilbert, MA.. Kingsbridge History Society Recorder. 9. 15.
SDV325629Monograph: Cherry, B. + Pevsner, N.. 1989. The Buildings of England: Devon. The Buildings of England: Devon. Hardback Volume. 806-7.
SDV343247Un-published: Weston, S.. 1983. List of Field Monument Warden Visits 1983. Lists of Field Monument Warden Visits. Unknown.
SDV355681Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2014. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #92917 ]

Associated Monuments

MDV2790Related to: Thurlestone, All Saints (Building)

Associated Finds

  • FDV560 - PLATE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1750 AD)

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Nov 20 2014 12:42PM