SK 31957769 Holmesfield Hall, Cruck Building. Parts of crucks showing in a barn, which was probably the original dwelling, with external stone steps. (1-2) Photographic record. (3)
The large barn at Hall Farm contains the considerable remains of a medieval timber-framed hall. Now contiguous to the barn but originally separate from it is a long wing, probably a range of lodgings, extending southwards, which was also of framed construction. Dendrochronology has established that the hall was built c1452-4 and the east range c1454-8. A 17th century extension to the hall range comprises a two bay single-storied barn. A late 17th century granary was added against the north side of the barn extension and contains a pair of upper crucks. The gap between the east end of the present farmhouse and the west gable of the barn marks the site, in part, of a destroyed bay of the medieval hall, thought by analogy to have contained a hearth and chimney hood with a reredos wall and an entrance from the yard. The principal family from 1086 was the Deincourts, with the manor passing to Sir William Lovell and Sir Ralph, Lord Cromwell after the death of the 13th Baron Deincourt in 1454, which ties in with the dendro dates obtained for the hall and lodgings range. From the quality of the building it may be inferred that it had important residents or was used at intervals as a principal residence, at least for a time. That this was disrupted may be inferred from the fact that the manor was granted to Sir John Savage by Henry VII in 1487, after the end of the Wars of the Roses. In 1586 it was purchased by John Manners of Haddon and probably let to tenants after this time, if not before. The old hall was presumably abandoned as a dwelling on construction of the present hall in the 17th century. The buildings were surveyed in 1980 and in 1995-6. (4-5)
Holmesfield Hall is a series of farm buildings, with a formerly timber-framed open hall and service range. The listing description suggests a 15th century date with 17th century alterations and additions. The north range is of five bays with king-post trusses supporting a single purlin roof and the east range is of three bays with three trusses which match those of the north range but without embellishments. These two ranges have previously been analysed by dendrochronology. The north range produced a felling date of 1452-4, the service range a felling date of 1454-8. A single bay to the north of the north range contains a single cruck truss, apex type "D", supporting a double purlin roof. Six samples were taken from these timbers for dating. A felling date was obtained from the cruck blades of c. 1650; the purlins could not be satisfactorily dated. (6)
From the National Heritage List for England:
'PARISH OF HOLMESFIELD MAIN ROAD SK 37 NW 5/163 Farm outbuildings 31.1.67 to the east of Holmesfield Hall (formerly listed as barns at Holmesfield Hall) GV II* Farm outbuildings, formerly timber framed open hall and service range. C15 with C17 alterations and additions. Coursed coal measures sandstone with quoins, plain gables to north range, coped gable to south end of east range, with moulded kneelers and with Welsh slated roofs having stone slated eaves courses. Irregular T-plan, originally L-plan, timber framed complex, to which a C17 rear wing was added. North range of four bays, with central full-height double doorway, a single taking-in door to the east, and several single light openings to the ground floor. Attached east range of four bays with two plain ground floor doorways, with plain boarded doors, and a single window at the north end. Interior. North range, five bay king post truss roof supporting a single purlin roof. Arch braced tie beam on west side of double doorway has curved struts, a moulded fillet to the tie beam soffit, and a six-petal rose boss. The wall plates have pegholes in the position of mortices for a close studded frame, and jowel posts remain in situ within the walling to the east of the doorway, with mortices for side braces. The soffits to the tie beams to the east of the doorway have mortice holes. The east range is of three bays, with three trusses which match those to the north range, but without embellishment. The remains of some jowel posts are to be found in the walling. Single bay to north of north range has a single cruck truss supporting a double purlin roof. The internal timber structure of this building suggests that it was formerly a timber framed open hall with an ancillary crosswing as a service or lodgings range.
Listing NGR: SK3197677688.'
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