Heritage Category: Listed Building

Grade: I

List Entry Number: 1137331

Date first listed: 11-Oct-1961

Date of most recent amendment: 24-Jul-2008



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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: North Somerset (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Yatton

National Grid Reference: ST 43188 65390


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

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Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.




GV I A prebendal house dating from the mid-C15, with later alterations, including a mid-C19 rear wing, now a separate private dwelling known as Rectory Cottage (included in the listing, but of a lesser order of significance).

MATERIALS: The Old Rectory is built of rendered stone rubble with limestone dressings, with slate roofs with ridge and gable stacks and raised coped verges. The rear wing (Rectory Cottage) is also built in stone rubble but no longer rendered, and has a slate roof and ridge stack.

PLAN: The building has an irregular plan, consisting of a hall with a cross wing to the left, porch to right, and an off-centre rear stair tower. Rectory Cottage has a simple two-room rectangular plan, with a later C20 extension to its east.

EXTERIOR: The Old Rectory is a two storey building with the attached mid-C19 wing (Rectory Cottage) also being two storeys high, but with a lower roof line. The north front has two projecting wings with gable ends to front left, a main range of two bays with a two-storey porch to its right. The gable end to left has a pointed arched door in a hollow-moulded surround, with a studded door with raised fillets and strap hinges and a small single cusped ogee light to its right. The next gable end has two stone mullion and transom windows to the ground floor, and a chamfered surround with C19 lights, and a three-light stone mullioned window at first floor level, left of the flue for the gable stack, and has weathered diagonal buttresses to the corner. The inner side of this wing has a similar ground floor mullion and transom window, and a blocked first floor single light with cusped ogee head and quatrefoils in its upper tracery. The main range has two similar mullion and transom windows at ground floor level, that to the right blocked, and a similar window at first floor level to the left, with original C15 tracery, cusped ogee heads to the lights and quatrefoils. The porch to the right has a four-centred arched doorway with jamb-shafts and hollow mouldings, and the inner four-centred arched doorway has a four-centred arched head and roll and hollow mouldings, with stone benches to the sides. At first floor level it has a two-light transomed window and a similar buttress to the left corner. The right return (west elevation) has a small single storey later addition with a pitched roof, formerly a garage, now in domestic use. The gable end visible behind it has battered walls. The left return, the east gable end of the main range, has a cross wing extending both to the left and right. In the centre it has a C20 four-centred arched opening with a glazed door, with a narrow single light to its right and a two-light casement in stone surround to its left. At first floor level there is a similar two-light casement and a smaller two-light casement to the attic in a plain stone surround. At the first floor to the left is a segmental-headed two-light casement with leaded lights, and to the right is a C20 two-light casement in moulded stone surround, buttresses left and right, and a crocketed stack to the gable end. The rear elevation to the south has a four-centred arched moulded doorway to the left (rear of the porch) with a French window set in the opening, two mullion and transom windows at ground floor level, with plate-glass to the right, blocked to the left with cusped tracery remaining, and two similar windows at first floor with tracery, that to the right blocked. The inner side of the rear stair tower has a four-centred arched chamfered doorway, now glazed as a window and at first floor level is a C19, two-light window with trefoil heads, with a buttress to the corner as to the north front. The west front of the attached two-storey C19 rear wing (Rectory Cottage), has two sixteen-pane sashes with segmental heads at ground floor level with a gabled dormer above, and to its right an entrance porch with a pitched roof, and a door with raised fillets. Its rear gable end to the south has a C20 bow window at ground floor level with a two-light casement above. The attached late-C20 two storey extension to its right is not of special interest.

INTERIOR: The front porch leads to a narrow entrance hall, with the rear door retaining inside a French window, studded with raised fillets and strap hinges and segmental rere-arch. The room in the central range has a framed ceiling, four bays by two, one bay now over the entrance hall, with moulded beams and a fireplace with a depressed four-centred arch, with shafts to the sides and cusped panels to the rear and a moulded mantel. The four-centred arched opening to front of cross wing has a panelled cusped soffit and jamb-shafts. The end room in the main range has a curved beam over the fireplace, a pointed arched chamfered door to the rear and a former door to the C19 wing (now Rectory Cottage). At the rear of the main room, a pointed arched opening leads to the stair tower with panelled cusped soffit and rere-arch, containing a C19 replacement winder stair. On the first floor runs a passage from the front to rear of the house. The door to the front main room, with heavy raised fillets, is set in a four-centred arched hollow-moulded surround. At the rear of the passage is a pointed segmental-headed door, with the room to the left having an C18 panelled door in moulded surround, a fireplace with a square head, shafts to sides, cornice, and a four-centred arched doorway with wave and hollow mouldings to a chamber over the porch. C20 stairs lead to the attic, containing a roof structure, though not fully visible, with arched-braces, cambered collars, one row of purlins, and windbraces over the main range.

HISTORY: The Old Rectory, a former prebendal house with Gothic architectural detailing, dates from the mid-C15, and was built adjacent, to the south-east of the Church of St Mary the Virgin, which during that period was significantly altered and enlarged by the Newton family in C15 Gothic style. Pevsner states that its tracery is exactly as that at Tickenham Court. In the mid-C19 The Old Rectory was extended to the east with a dairy/servants wing, possibly including a kitchen. In the late-C20, this wing became a separate private dwelling, and was further extended to its east.

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION: The Old Rectory (with the attached Rectory Cottage) in Yatton, North Somerset, merits listing at Grade I for the following principal reasons:

* It is an outstanding example of a mid-C15 prebendal house, which on a national level are rare to survive.

* Its prestigious use of materials and exceptionally high quality carving and architectural detailing rarely survive in domestic buildings of this early date and confirm the high status this building had at the time.

* Though not much is known about its history, it is strongly associated with the adjacent Church of St Mary the Virgin (qv) which was extensively altered and embellished in the C15 by the Newton family, in similar Gothic style, and as such forms an interesting architectural group.

* Rectory Cottage, while attached to the Old Rectory and of some interest in its own right, possesses a lesser order of significance than the main house.

SOURCES: N Pevsner, Buildings of England : North Somerset and Bristol 1958


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 33808

Legacy System: LBS


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: North Somerset and Bristol, (1958)

End of official listing