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HER Number:MDV9110
Name:Farmhouse, Week, Berry Pomeroy


Farmhouse, Week, Berry Pomeroy, remains of 16th century house.


Grid Reference:SX 839 613
Map Sheet:SX86SW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishBerry Pomeroy
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishBERRY POMEROY

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX86SW/57
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II*)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • FARMHOUSE (Early Medieval to Post Medieval - 1066 AD to 1750 AD (Between))

Full description

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV161706.

Week remains of 16th century house.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV161711.

Everett, a. W. /dcnq/20(1938-1939)295-297/week, berry pomeroy.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV161712.


Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV161713.

Radford, c. , + radford, r. /tda/71(1939)68/18th report on ancient monuments.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV161714.

Doe/hhr:berry pomeroy/(21/5/1985)3.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV161715.

Brown, s. /berry pomeroy: archaeological survey for presentation/(1997/8)25 + appendix 3:104.

Everett, A. W., Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV17322.

Vis=estimated -/-/1937 (everett) buildings of limestone stand on the north east and west sides of a small court which on the south side is bounded by a stone wall. They comprise a dwelling house on the north, a barn of two floors on the east, and a linhay on the west. The linhay occupies the site of a former wing of the house, which was originally l-shaped. The wing obviously contained the principal apartments and perhaps the staircase, but there appears to have been an external gallery from which the upper rooms were entered. The remaining wing has two floors with two rooms on each. All the windows appear to be original. The west ground floor has two 3-light windows, one blocked up. In the north wall is an original fireplace with oven also blocked. There are 2- 3- and single-light windows in the eastern half and upper floors of the house. Internally a partition wall contains a panel 3 feet by 2 feet 3 inches with the royal arms of elizabeth i worked in plaster. Near the heads of the supporters of the arms are the letters "e" "r" and the date 1584. The original roof remains. From the evidence of the windows the house appears to have been erected about 1550, but though obviously the residence of a family of some consequence nothing appears to be known of its history. The house is stated to have been condemned in 1939 because of an inadequate water supply.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, Untitled Source (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV24.

Vis=24/11/1952 (os) everett's description correct except west ground floor contains only one window of three lights and the first floor one window of three lights one of which is blocked up the south wall has a mullioned window of two lights on both ground and first floors while the east wall has two single light windows now blocked up on the first floor. North wall has one window of two lights on first floor northern block is roofed with modern slates and the two wings with galvanised iron. The buildings are in fair state of preservation and are in use as cattle sheds including the northern block. All windows have red sandstone ashlar work (os).

Department of Environment, Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV326586.

Small house reduced in size and now derelict. Circa c16, date 1584 on interior plasterwork now removed. Stone rubble. Scantle slate roof with gabled ends and gabled to left of south-east front. Originally l-shaped on plan but the south wing has been replaced by an adjoining linhay. South east front has two plain doorway and a two-light hollow-chamfered stone mullion window on right-hand to each floor; the ground floor has large relieving arch over. Similar window at rear and similar but single-light window in north-east gable end. Stone chimney stacks at gable ends. The roof is sagging and is in state of collapse at the south-west end. Queen strut and tie beam roof. Inside the floor has fallen in at the south-west end; there are ovolo moulded ceiling beams and joists lying on the floor. The chamfered ceiling beam in the north-east room is still in position. The moulded plaster heraldic achievement with date 1584 below has been removed from first floor room and deposited in totnes museum (doe).

Radford, C. + Radford, C. A. R., Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV4236.

Had 16th century coat of arms. Threatened with demolition in 1939 (radford and radford).

Wapshott, E. & Webb, P., 2019, Farmhouse, Week, Berry Pomeroy, South Hams: Building Recording and Evalution (Report - Survey). SDV363337.

South West Archaeology Ltd. (SWARCH) was commissioned by a private client to undertake historic building recording and evaluation trenching as part of a programme of works associated with the re-development of the Grade II* Listed Week Farmhouse, Berry Pomeroy, South Hams, Devon. The evaluation trenching does not add much detail to the information provided by the building recording.

No structural features were identified within the trenches; though sections of low wall adjacent to one of the trenches indicates the presence of an additional former structure at the south-eastern edge of the current yard, possibly dating to the 18th-19th century farmyard. The construction cut for the terracing into the hillside was identified within Trench 01; whilst Trenches 02 and 03 only identified a modern yard surface directly overlying the natural, suggesting that any buried trace of former structures has likely been lost.

The farmhouse is a complex two storey rectangular gabled range on a north-east to south-west
alignment set into the slope of the hillside at the north-western end of a courtyard, the northeastern
end only being visible above ground at first floor level. It is abutted at its south-western end by linhay.

The building is constructed of a combination of local shalestone and shale; its steeply pitched and
re-slated roof with terracotta ridge tiles sat on new kingpost and strut timber A-frames. The building
has been comprehensively re-fenestrated (possibly in the 18th century) with red sandstone mullioned frames, likely salvaged from the nearby Berry Pomeroy castle ruins.

The two-storey north-east gable end is only visible at first floor height, and is topped by a boxy chimney shaft with weathering courses. It is constructed of regularised/semi-coursed slatestone, and appears to have been raised/re-built towards the eaves with more irregular looser packed stone. Two matching windows (W1 and W2) have been forced into this elevation to either side of the chimney stack. There is a crudely shaped string course with rounded profile at eaves height.

Much of the south-east elevation was largely destroyed in a storm event during the 1990s, devastating the southern corner. In the years post-dating this the remains were braced by an infill of concrete blocks and cement mortar. Two historic paired doorways (D1 and D2) were recreated within this blockwork as well as two modern window openings, one to each floor (W8 and W10). The ground surface has been cut down quite considerably on this yard side, with concrete abutments bracing the base of the elevation. A single bay's width of historic fabric, however, survives towards the north eastern end of the elevation. This is constructed of regularised rubble and semi-coursed slatestone slabs and blocks with a clay bond and lime and clay mortar pointing.

The interior of the building has lain empty for much of the 20th century during which time it has been damaged; leading to internal features not surviving in good condition, and almost all detail being lost. The space is divided unequally by a now ruinous heavy two storey stone rubble partition; there being historically larger ground and first floor rooms to the south-western end compared to those of the north-eastern end.

The surviving evidence suggests that the south-western ground floor room was lit by a large window, had carved ceiling beams and was heated for comfort, (the small hearth not being large enough for service use). The smaller ground floor room seems to have had a large exterior door to the courtyard, but no window and its hearth currently presents as being 'open' form and more servile in character. It is likely, therefore, that the unequal division and character of the spaces reflects their differing functions, the domestic living quarters being to the south-west; the service range being to the north-east.

The farmhouse shows several phases within its construction. It is possible, based on similarity of stonework to other suspected early phases of wall on the site, that the north-western wall dates to the earliest, possibly medieval, phase of construction; before a substantial re-build in the late 16th century. The only openings which present as belonging to this phase of the house, demonstrated by their relieving arches, are windows W5 and W6 in the south-western gable, and the now partially blocked doorway (W7) in the south-eastern wall. The position of the corbels and in situ flagstone flooring signifies that the heavy cross-wall recreates an earlier partition or screen line; and that this later re-build probably replicates an unequal division of space that was probably original to the building.

Features of note within the building are:
• The reset windows W1, W2, W4, W5, W6, W7 AND W8. They are fine, probably later 16th century
hollow-chamfered mullioned stone frames and would appear to signify the movement and reuse
of materials within the wider estate.
• The massive slatestone slab segmental arches over W5, W6 and W7 identify the only original
surviving openings of this phase of the walls of the range.
• The carved beams and joists stored from the collapsed south-west ceiling, are evidence of a room
of some status.
• The surviving plain chamfered beams and plain chamfered in situ joists to the north-east end,
provide evidence of differential function of the different ends of the building.
• FP1 – evidence of a heated room. The fireplace also displays the reuse of materials, with a reused
hollow chamfered stone and timber carved lintel. The chimney flue however displays heavy
dressed slab reveals and looks 'built' into the wall, indicating a phase of alteration.
• FP2 – evidence of domestic cooking? The forcing of the flue and building of the stack into the
elevation, the extension of the hearth jambs, reuse of materials and crudeness of execution of
final form (a lack of a lintel for example) all define status of the space and historic phasing.
• FP3 – the indicative dating possibilities of this neat well-preserved hob-grate and its secondary
forced character defines a further phase of adaption.
• The number of keeping places to the north-east end would suggest these rooms were dark?

Trench 01 was located against the north-western wall of B1, at the point of blocked window W3. It
was 2.75 metres long on an approximate north-west to south-east orientation, measuring 1.80 metres wide and 1 metres deep. A single feature, construction cut [105], was identified within the trench (Figures 13-14).The stratigraphy of the trench comprised an infill/rubble layer (100), mid-dark brown friable claysilt with abundant stone rubble, asbestos, and barbed-wire up to 0.65 metres deep. This overlaid buried soil (101), dark brown soft-friable silt-clay c.0.37 metres thick; subsoil (106), mid-light yellow-brown soft silt-clay c.0.20 metres thick; and the natural shillet bedrock. Construction cut [105] was oriented approximately north-east to south-west, measuring 0.62+ metres wide and 0.75 metres deep with a vertical north-western edge, clear to sharp break of slope and flat base. It contained three fills: (102), dark brown silt-clay with angular and sub-angular stone inclusions; and (103), and (104), mid yellow-brown silt-clays with angular stone and shillet inclusions. This feature forms the construction terracing cut for B1 into the hillside.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV161706Migrated Record:
SDV161711Migrated Record:
SDV161712Migrated Record:
SDV161713Migrated Record:
SDV161714Migrated Record:
SDV161715Migrated Record:
SDV17322Migrated Record: Everett, A. W..
SDV24Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. OSA. Card Index.
SDV326586Migrated Record: Department of Environment.
SDV363337Report - Survey: Wapshott, E. & Webb, P.. 2019. Farmhouse, Week, Berry Pomeroy, South Hams: Building Recording and Evalution. South West Archaeology. 190902. Digital.
SDV4236Migrated Record: Radford, C. + Radford, C. A. R..

Associated Monuments: none recorded

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV8203 - Building Recording and Evalution: Farmhouse, Week, Berry Pomeroy, South Hams (Ref: 190902)

Date Last Edited:Nov 27 2019 2:03PM