SO8932 CHURCH STREET
859-1/6/106 (South side)
04/03/52 Nos.41-48 (Consecutive)
Abbey Lawn Cottages
Terrace of town houses. C15 or early C16, restored 1967 seq.
Braced box timber-framing, tile roofs. Part of a very long row
of late medieval cottages, previously extending from No.34 to
Narrow 1-room frontage, jettied to Church Street, with various
gables or swept-down extensions to rear.
2 storeys and attics, 8 bays. No.41, the John Moore Museum, is
set gable to street, in 2 jettied storeys, remainder eaves to
street. All 1-windowed. First-floor windows are small 2-light
wood-mullioned with casements, but with shutters to No.45; at
ground floor plate-glass display windows to No.41, shutters to
No.45, and, flanked by vertical painted boarding, 2-light wood
mullion and transom casements to remainder. All above 2
panels, plastered, on cill. To left of each unit a plank door
under cusped flat ogee head, and with bracket to jetty. Big
swept down rear slope contains series of 2-light dormers in 2
ranges, under long raking tiled roofs.
INTERIOR: No.41 has 2-bay roof, 1-purlin, wind-braced; collar
and tie truss to clasped purlin. Heavy chamfered and stopped
spine beams, braced panel walls, all heavily restored, but
characteristic of the refurbishment.
No.45 is called Merchant's House, generally open to the
public, has small partitioned front room, then lofty open hall
with hearth, to smoke-blackened "hood" within roof slope.
Stair with winders to foot, solid treads, some of those at top
appear original. An open 3-light casement to stair, into
lean-to with 4-light shuttered casement, and rear access door.
Main front wall has wooden shop shutters. All reconstructed to
suggest original layout of the cottages, with shop to front of
heated hall which provided access to an upper chamber.
Part of a terrace of houses built as a speculative development
for the Abbey (qv). A rumoured threat to the property in the
1930s led to their being acquired by the Abbey Lawn Trustees.
The frontages and interiors had been much modified, and this
was scarcely recognisable as a coherent terrace. In 1965 the
Trustees applied for permission to demolish, but an inspection
on site by SPAB revealed the significance of the structures,
and they were substantially refurbished to their current
condition from 1967 onwards. Photographs of before and after
condition can be inspected in No.45.
John Moore was a local author who, in 'Portrait of Elmbury'
(1947), vividly described the social life of Tewkesbury in the
immediate pre- and post-war period; the museum relates to
country life in the area.
Listing NGR: SO8908032535