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.

Torbay (Unitary Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:
SX 91816 67852



SX9167 TEIGNMOUTH ROAD, Watcombe 885-1/5/457 (West side) 08/06/88 Brunel Manor


Large house, now conference centre. c1870 by J Watson for JR Crompton, a Lancaster paper manufacturer. Ground plan said to conform to design of cellars by William Burn for Isambard Kingdom Brunel. Local grey crazed limestone rubble with Bathstone dressings; gabled slate roof with cusped bargeboards; stacks with clustered brick shafts, mostly diagonally-set, with stone bands and projecting cornices. PLAN: Set in extensive grounds. Originally L-plan, the main range double-depth with entrance on north side and garden elevation to south; north-west dining room to service wing. Later ballroom added to east end of main range. Entrance into heated hall with large stair hall to its west. EXTERIOR: 2 and 3 storeys. Deep eaves with moulded brackets; rock-faced quoins; windows mostly glazed with 2-pane plate glass sashes. Garden (south) elevation of main range with a symmetrical 5-window front, the end bays broken forward and gabled, small gable in centre bay. 2-storey canted bays to left and right with hipped slate roofs with decoratively-cut slates; ground-floor bays with similar slate canopies on timber brackets. Attic windows with deep tympana with stone carving. Centre windows also have carved tympana under polychromatic arches; 2 gableted attic dormers. To the left the front is set back with 2 gables to the front and a C20 single-storey addition, moving forward a 6-bay verandah with cast-iron columns with cusped timber brackets. Single-storey canted bay to right of front. The north (entrance) elevation is more irregular. 3-storey-and-attic entrance tower with a steep hipped roof, gabled to the front, 2 windows wide. Moulded arched doorway with shafts with massive porch canopy with diamond pattern slates on massive timber brackets with cast-iron balustrade with trefoil-headed motifs. Original 2-leaf door. Tower has paired window, the second stage with moulded arches below a tympanum with a carved roundel. To right of the entrance tower the front is gabled over a 5-light arched stair window with quatrefoils below. Pair of wrought-iron globe lamps to stone bases flank entry. The front of the service wing, to the right, is irregular and in a slightly plainer style. Ballroom addition to the left has 8 gabled roof dormers with cusped bargeboards and blind segmental-headed arcading below; projecting lateral stack. The south side of the ballroom is obscured by a C20 addition. INTERIOR: Very complete apart from alterations required by the fire officer which have concealed some features. Entrance hallway with heavy doorcases including trefoil-headed friezes and nail-head enrichment; pine panelled doors; original chimneypiece and plaster cornices. Stair hall with coved ceiling has good open-well stair with turned balusters, a moulded handrail and brass lampholders. Other fine rooms have plaster cornices and various chimneypieces of diverse designs. Upper floors retain original doors and chimneypieces. Ballroom addition has inserted ceiling but preserves elaborate chimneypiece. A handsome High Victorian house with electic detail, preserving most of its original fittings. The house stands on a site of one designed by William Burn for Isambard Kingdom Brunel, which was not (apart from some ground works) built. (Buildings of England: Pevsner N: Devon: London: 1952-1989: P.863).

Listing NGR: SX9181667852


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, Cherry, B, The Buildings of England: Devon, (1989), 863
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: South Devon, (1952), 863


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

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Date: 03 Nov 2002
Reference: IOE01/09574/34
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Keith Mackenzie. Source Historic England Archive
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