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Listed Building
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Ordnance survey map of THE CHANTRY HOUSE
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South Somerset (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
ST 51941 15398


ST5115 BRYMPTON D'EVERCY CP 10/16 The Chantry House or The Dower House 19.4.61 GV I By tradition a chantry priests' house, but probably a dower house for Dame Joan Sydenham, now used as museum. Mid C15, modified early C17. Ham stone ashlar; stone slate roof between coped gables with gabletted finials; stone chimney stacks. Two storeys; south elevation to churchyard 6 bays. Above, cinquefoil-cusped 2-light windows in hollow-chamfer recesses with flat arches and square labels bays 1, 3 and 4, bay 2 blocked, the cusps shaved off bay 4; to bay 5 a 4- centre arched single-light with label, and to bay 6 a 2-light window with uncusped pointed arches and incised spandrils under flat head, these two last also with labels; below, near-triangular arched moulded doorways bay 1 and between bays 5/6; to bays 2, 4 and 6, and two to bay 3, are 2-light semi-circular-arched light windows under flat heads and labels, with matching single-light bay 5: to bay 2 and between bays 5/6 formerly were garderobes. West gable has similar semi-circular arched light window below, with label, and above a deep 2-light cinquefoil cusped window with plain transome, under square label. North elevation of 6 bays: bay 1 has blocked 2-light window below, blank above, with chimney stack with offsets and pair of octagonal stacks with moulded caps; to left of bay 2, and to bays 3, 4 and 5 are 2-light mullioned and transomed windows with pointed arched lights, incised spandrils and square labels, all at upper level, one similar window without transome lower bay 5: to right of bay 2 an octagonal plan stair turret with small doorway in north face, cinquefoil cusped light in north-east face, and above a string 3 pairs of lights with square labels to north-east, north and north-west faces, surmounted by battlemented parapet; to lower bay 2 left a moulded pointed-arched doorway without label, and to lower bays 3/4 and 6 are moulded near-triangular arched doorways, the latter rather wide. North elevation has a segmental- pointed archway with pair of boarded gates below, and above two 2-light mullioned and transomed windows under labels. Inside, the west half was formerly the first floor hall with services below, now one space with gallery around following a 1923 restoration and reshaping; open framed ceiling of 5 bays, collar-trusses with 2 tiers purlins and 2 rows cusped windbracing; gallery has fragments, including balusters, of C17 work; at upper level a wide cambered-arched fireplace in south wall, and nearby a triangular arched doorway to former garderobe. The eastern half appears to have had a solar and a principal bedroom on first floor, reached by the stone newel stair in the north turret, the only former access to first floor, with servants rooms below; here are 4-bays of a different roof type, with some kingpost and curved braced trusses, with 3 tiers arched windbraces, one inverted; above are 2 timber-framed wattle and daub partitions with original doorways and also small sections of plink and muntin partitions: in centre rood on display a fine C14 door - origin uncertain: east rood to first floor has a decorative plaster ceiling of c1625, with central pendant and frieze; an almost flat-arched moulded fireplace of c1520, with overmantel of 4 quatrefoil panels. An unconventional layout for the period, but which is explained by its concept as a dower house, for which purpose it was refurbished c1625; by the early C18 it was used as stabling; currently it serves as a museum, with emphasis on cider-making. (Pevsner, N, Buildings of England, South and West Somerset, 1958; Country Life, 26 November 1898, 30th November, 1907, and articles by Christopher Hussey 7 and 14th May 1927).

Listing NGR: ST5194215397


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

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Books and journals
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: South and West Somerset, (1958)
'Country Life' in 30 November, , Vol. 22, (1907), 774-780
'Country Life' in 14 May, , Vol. 61, (1927), 762-769
'Country Life' in 26 November, , Vol. 4, (1898), 656-659
'Country Life' in 7 May, , Vol. 61, (1927), 718-726
Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England, Part 37 Somerset,


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

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Date: 31 Mar 2004
Reference: IOE01/11976/34
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Brian Roberts. Source Historic England Archive
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