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HER Number:MDV58143
Name:Northdown House


Northdown House


Grid Reference:SS 451 269
Map Sheet:SS42NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishBideford
Ecclesiastical ParishBIDEFORD

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SS42NE/271
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II*)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • SCHOOL (XVIII to XXI - 1751 AD to 2009 AD (Between))

Full description

National Monuments Record, 33039 (National Monuments Record Database). SDV349877.

Department of National Heritage, 19/04/1993, Bideford, 200 (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV338459.

Northdown hall. Northdown hall part of the Stella Maris Convent. Large house. Early 19th century. Solid rendered walls. Hipped slate roof. Rendered chimneys. Double-depth plan, 3 rooms wide, with rear right service wing. On upper floor the front range has 4 rooms with a further room in the rear range to left of staircase. 2 storeys with cellar; 4-window front facing ne, the 2 middle windows set in a slight projection. Windows have barred sashes: 6 over 9 panes in ground storey, 6 over 6 panes above. Small top entablature with parapet. Matching sashes in upper-storey window of left gable-wall. Several others in rear wall, including the back stairs window with 12 over 12 panes. Interior: well-preserved. Geometrical main stair with scrolled wrought-iron balusters on both sides. Mahogany handrails, voluted at the foot and surmounted by short iron lampstandards. Moulded nosings to treads; carved step-ends. Compartment has 6-panelled doors with panelled reveals in reeded architraves. Enriched cornices and ceiling-bands on both floors, the upper floor with a centre oval decorated with medallions and having a leaved chandelier boss. The 3 ground-floor front rooms have panelled shutters and reeded architraves to the windows. The middle and left-hand rooms have enriched cornices and ceiling bands; also leaved chandelier bosses. Both have good white marble chimneypieces; that to left has vine tendrils and centre plaque with figures on the lintel, which is supported by caryatids; that in the middle has a surround carved with flowers and scrolls. The right-hand room is plainer, with only a moulded cornice. Upper-storey rooms have moulded corncies, panelled shutters and simple marble chimneypieces. Wooded back staircase has narrow open well, cut strings, thin square balusters, and handrail ramped up over column-newels. Charles kingsley is believed to have written 'Westward Ho!' while he was tenant of Northdown Hall in 1854-5. Dated 19/04/1993.

Rogers, W. H. H., 1948, Untitled Source, 77-8, 80 (Un-published). SDV7311.

Timms, S. C., 1977-1981, Bideford Development Control Consultations, 23/9 (Un-published). SDV346164.

Ordnance Survey, 1980, Untitled Source (Personal Comment). SDV349878.

Northdown Hall is of modern appearance and is incorporated in the school buildings at the convent. It is of little architectural interest externally.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV338459List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of National Heritage. 19/04/1993. Bideford. Historic Houses Register. A4 Comb Bound. 200.
SDV346164Un-published: Timms, S. C.. 1977-1981. Bideford Development Control Consultations. Devon County Council Conservation Section Collection. A4 Unbound. 23/9.
SDV349877National Monuments Record Database: National Monuments Record. 33039. National Monuments Record. Website.
SDV349878Personal Comment: Ordnance Survey. 1980. Unknown.
SDV7311Un-published: Rogers, W. H. H.. 1948. Notes on Bideford. 3. Manuscript. 77-8, 80.

Associated Monuments: none recorded

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4720 - Observation and Excavation on the Site of Stella Maris Convent School, Bideford

Date Last Edited:Apr 7 2015 11:59AM