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Listed Building record MDR4514 - The Old Hall, Moor Road, Breadsall

Type and Period (4)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

The hall is located to the South West [sic] of Breadsall Church, and was 'altered and rebuilt after rather an unfortunate fashion' in 1877. It incorporates 14th century work. (1) 'Near the church is the old manor house, the ancient Over Hall, the residence of the early lords of the manor. It was partially rebuilt and modernised in 1877, but a portion of the original structure, erected five or six centuries ago, still remains. It has had a changeful fate since it ceased to shelter the lords of the manor. For a time it was occupied by John Hieron, the Nonconformist vicar of the parish, during the Commonwealth; it ha been a farm house, a hunting box, a school, a public house for 130 years, a village shop, and now again a farm house.' (2) Pevsner describes the hall in 1953 as being constructed of some 'Medieval stonework and half timbering, but very badly tampered with and added to'. The interior of the hall is also described as having exposed timber-framed walls and a medieval fitted bench around two sides. (3) The Old Hall, Breadsall, is a Grade II* listed building. The house is constructed of coursed squared gritstone with gritstone dressings. It has close studded timber framing with red brick to the north and a plain tile roof with a stone coped gable to the west. (4) The exterior is described as being of little interest and, apart from some re-used stone, contains no pre-19th century fabric. (5) The undercroft at Breadsall Old Hall reveals that the whole surviving house was built against the outside of a pre-existing building that possibly dated from the early 14th century, based on a few remnant features. The present building seems to have been designed as a hall and cross-wing. (6) The Conservation Practice report divides the hall into 4 periods or phases of building. The report points to a substantial medieval undercroft still being intact, albeit filled with earth and rubble, immediately to the east of the present building. Also, the east wall of the present building is of archaeological interest as it appears to have belonged to an earlier structure, possibly a Norman manorial complex, in the garden area. The garden to the east of the present building is therefore a site of considerable archaeological interest in that the main body of an important medieval house could be buried there. The area to the western end of the period 2 building could also be of interest as the building was severely truncated here in 1879. (7) An MA thesis on Breadsall Old Hall concluded that although the present structure probably dates from the early 17th century, it was probably formerly part of a Norman manorial complex; the remains of which are thought to lie to the east within the garden area. This Norman hall may have incorporated or re-used an earlier Anglo-Saxon hall. (8) Core samples were obtained from ten different oak timbers forming joists, beams and posts in the undercroft at Breadsall Old Hall. One was found to be unsuitable for tree ring dating; the others appeared to represent three, or even four, felling phases. The first of these is dated to 1231, a second phase is dated to the period 1231 to 1266, a third possible phase, represented by a single sample, has a felling date range of 1251 to 1286 (although this might be associated with the second phase) and the fourth phase has a felling date of 1481 to 1485. (9) The Old Hall at Breadsall is a distinctive L-shaped building standing opposite the parish church. It is built using a mixture of coursed gritstone, studded timberwork, red brick and roof tiles. There are two main floors, the lower one being raised above an undercroft. The undercroft retains medieval stone and timber features, including the base of a substantial stone column. The ceiling has timber joints, dated by dendrochronology to the 13th century. The east end wall displays an external plinth and blocked doorways of an earlier building that formerly stood to the east of the present building. The status of the 13th century stone-built Old Hall is uncertain. It may have started as a private chamber block or may be an example of a first-floor hall, with its evidence for former service rooms at the west end. At a later date, perhaps the late 15th century, a timber-framed cross-wing was created at the east end of the building, possibly further adapted at the end of the 16th century. Later minor alterations were made using brickwork. In 1877-79 the building was heavily altered, its west end being shortened and new stone and brickwork being introduced to different parts of the exterior. Inside, the undercroft and principal floor were least affected. The upper floor and roof space underwent serious alteration. In recent years brick pillars have been built in the undercroft to help support a ceiling whose timbers are carrying considerable weight. Despite being much altered, however, the Old Hall is a building of some rarity and historical importance within the Midlands. (10)

Sources/Archives (10)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Cox, J C. 1877. Notes on the Churches of Derbyshire, Vol. III. p 54.
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: Bulmer, T and Co.. 1895. History, Topography and Directory of Derbyshire. p 712-3.
  • <3> Bibliographic reference: Pevsner, N. 1953. The Buildings of England: Derbyshire, 1st edition. p 108.
  • <4> Bibliographic reference: DOE (HHR) S E Derby RD Dec 1960 6.
  • <5> Personal Observation: F1 FRH 29-NOV-66.
  • <6> Unpublished document: Hutton, B. Derby Buildings Record. DBR 33, February and March 1989.
  • <7> Personal Observation: Drury, P. 1992. Observations by 'The Conservation Practice' on Breadsall Old Hall, Breadsall. Paul Drury.
  • <8> Unpublished document: Woodcroft, D (Univeristy of York). 1997. Breadsall Old Hall, Derbyshire: MA Dissertation in the Archaeology of Buildings, University of York. HER Doc. No. 759.
  • <9> Unpublished document: Nottingham University Tree-Ring Dating Laboratory. Dendro Sample Record and Summary. Report, March 1995.
  • <10> Unpublished document: Trent & Peak Archaeological Trust (TPAT). 1997. The Old Hall, Breadsall: A Building Survey. SMR Doc. No. 679.



Grid reference Centred SK 3708 3983 (106m by 71m)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (5)

  • EDR1986
  • EDR1795
  • EDR2758
  • EDR1794
  • EDR1484

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Record last edited

Jan 26 2024 2:56PM

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