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Listed Building record MDR6255 - 'The Cundy House' (conduit house), Craggs Road, Bolsover, Old Bolsover

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

Area SK 4719 7086. A Waterhouse, locally called 'Condy' from whence a conduit supplied the 17th century Castle with water. Shown on plan. (2) SK 4711 7092. The Waterhouse known as 'The Cundy House' has been revealed during the recent demolition of old houses. It is remarkably well preserved and is to be taken over by the Ministry of Works. The architecture is consistent with a 17th century date and the water source is a spring. (3) A conduit house situated on the hill to the north east of Bolsover Castle. The conduit house was probably erected by Sir Charles Cavendish some time before 1617 and is still connected by a lead pipe to the well house of the castle. (4) The conduit house is connected by a 50mm (3ins) cast iron pipe to the castle and used to feed the fountain in the inner bailey. This pipe replaced an earlier lead siphon, removed when Bolsover Hill was replaced by the current main road. (6) The Cundy House is a small conduit house built in the early 17th century to provide a water supply to Bolsover Castle. Consolidated as a roofless ruin in the 1970s, it became a target for vandalism and misuse. Detailed investigation discovered that the building originally had a solid stone-vaulted roof. This unusual roof form was restored in 2002-3 by English Heritage, providing a secure solution to the problems which the building had faced. (9) This rectangular stone-built structure, with internal dimensions of 3.65m x 2.65m and height of 3.7m from the present floor to the top of the roof, dates from the early 17th century. It is Grade II* listed. It is located 200m north of Bolsover Castle, below an escarpment and on a spring-line. From there, water flowed by underground pipe to the Cistern House at the Castle and thence to the Venus Fountain and the kitchens of the main residence, the Little Castle. At some time, its lead pipe was replaced by a cast-iron pipe, and only when this was damaged by a road scheme early in the 20th century did the Cundy House cease to function. Until the 1970s, the timber rafter roof was intact, but this was subsequently destroyed by vandals. Restoration of the roofless and derelict building was carried out in 2002-3. Research by English Heritage suggests that the roof may originally have been stone-vaulted, semi-circular on the underside but gabled on the top, and it was therefore rebuilt in this way. A path has been laid for public access to the building and a display-board explains how it functioned. (10) As part of the restoration scheme, a building survey was carried out, providing an outline of its known history, an archaeological account of its structure and its physical connection to the Castle, and making a comparative study of other known examples of 17th century conduits and conduit houses. (11) Associated with four other conduit houses, SMR sites 11207, 11208, 11209, 11210, probably supplying the town.

Sources/Archives (11)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Pegge, S. 1785. History of Bolsover and Peak Castles. p 21.
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: Downham, F. 1895. History of Bolsover. p 30, plan.
  • <3> Personal Observation: F1 WW 24-NOV-59.
  • <4> Personal Observation: F2 FRH 24-NOV-65.
  • <5> Bibliographic reference: DOE (IAM) Bolsover Castle 1972 64 (P.A. Faulkner).
  • <6> Unpublished document: Margerison, C I. 1971. Correspondence of 17-Mar-1971 re Civic Amenities Act 1967 Section 1, Bolsover Conservation Area.
  • <7> Bibliographic reference: Bulmer, T and Co.. 1895. History, Topography and Directory of Derbyshire. p 30.
  • <8> Unpublished document: County Treasure Recording Form. 13.2, with photos.
  • <9> Article in serial: Hill, N. 2002-3. 'Restoration of the Cundy House, Bolsover Castle', ASCHB Transactions. Volume 27, pp 27-36, illust..
  • <10> Article in serial: Guilbert, G. 2005. 'Some Fieldwork in Derbyshire by Trent & Peak Archaeological Unit in 2002-2003', Derbyshire Archaeological Unit. Volume 125, pp 72-94.
  • <11> Unpublished document: Sheppard, R (TPAU). 2003. The Cundy House, Bolsover, Derbyshire. An Historic Building Survey.



Grid reference Centred SK 47123 70917 (5m by 4m)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (3)

  • EDR3523
  • EDR1855
  • EDR1366

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Record last edited

Jan 23 2024 8:44PM

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