Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:


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Statutory Address:

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

Central Bedfordshire (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SP 97412 35776


RIDGMONT HIGH STREET SP 9735 13/70 Nos 18 to 24 (evens) GV II

Row of Bedford Estate cottages erected by the 8th Duke. Dated 1862. Mottled pink brick with red brick dressings. Clay tile roofs. 2 storeyed row with slightly projecting outer bays. Each outer bay is gabled. Central bay has smaller gable to centre flanked by gablets. Ground floor has 1:2:1 3-light windows. First floor has 1:4:1 windows, central 2 and outer ones of 2 lights, remaining ones single lights. All contain cast iron lattice casements under gauged brick flat arches. Nos 20 and 22 have gabled porches within angle formed by projecting outer bays. These have semi-circular archways and plank doors. Similar entrances to end elevations as well as ground floor canted bays. Deep eaves and verges, with moulded drop finials to all gables. Red brick ridge stacks.

From the late 1840's onwards the Dukes of Bedford recognised the advantages of housing agricultural workers in comfortable dwellings, and the emphasis in estate cottage building was on the utilitarian rather than the Picturesque. For housing of such a humble type the early examples are remarkably high. The cottages can be seen as an influential contribution to the development of working class housing, which culminated in the garden cities and early council housing. The Dukes of Bedford constructed roughly 500 cottages in the locality between the late 1840's and World War I. This group of cottages is similar in designs in 7th Duke's Plans and Elevations. The increased use of ornament like that suggested in plan 7 is related to the building's siting near an entrance lodge to Woburn Park.

The (7th) Duke of Bedford: Plans and Elevations of cottages for Agricultural Labourers, London. 1850 (reprint of letter and plans sent 1849 to Earl of Bedford A Great Agricultural Estate, being the Story of the Origin and Administration of Woburn and Thorney, London, 1897; Rev. C. H. Hartshorne: The System of Building Labourers' cottages pursued on the estates of His Grace the Duke of Bedford, n.d. but apparently 1849.

Listing NGR: SP9741235776


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

Legacy System number:
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Books and journals
Hartshorne, Reverend C H, The System of Building Labourers Cottages pursued on the Estates of his Grace the Duke of Bedford, (1849)
The 7th Duke of Bedford, Plans and Elevations of Cottages for Agricultural Labourers, (1850)


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

Images of England

Images of England was a photographic record of every listed building in England, created as a snap shot of listed buildings at the turn of the millennium. These photographs of the exterior of listed buildings were taken by volunteers between 1999 and 2008. The project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Date: 06 Oct 2002
Reference: IOE01/09376/26
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Kenneth Newton. Source Historic England Archive
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