The Gill


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
1 The Gill, Droomer Stile, Windermere, LA23 2NW


Ordnance survey map of The Gill
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Statutory Address:
1 The Gill, Droomer Stile, Windermere, LA23 2NW

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

South Lakeland (District Authority)
National Park:
National Grid Reference:


Farmhouse, mid-C17 with a secondary rear range, an attached former byre now a cottage and a detached bank barn.

Reasons for Designation

The Gill, of mid-C17 date, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:

* this farmhouse, attached former byre and detached bank barn, form a well-preserved example of a small mid-C17 Lakeland farmstead;

* the buildings are constructed of good quality local materials with detailing consistent with the regional style;

* the farmhouse's original two-cell domestic plan is retained;

* remarkably complete survival of C17 and C18 farmhouse fixtures and fittings, of which the oak joinery, including beams, cupboards, doors and panelling, is particularly noteworthy.

Historic interest:

* the farmhouse's evolution since construction is clearly legible and of interest;


This small, former farmstead comprising a farmhouse, attached byre and detached bank barn is thought to date from the mid-C17. The farmhouse was originally constructed with a two-unit plan comprising a ground floor firehouse, parlour and buttery with loft over, the latter probably accessed by a ladder from the parlour. A timber/stone stair was subsequently inserted into the north end of the inglenook within the firehouse, and a rear service room was added. The first edition Ordnance Survey map published in 1860 depicts the buildings with almost identical footprints to that of today, annotated 'Gill'. The former attached byre has been converted into a cottage, and the farmhouse and barn have undergone minor C20 and C21 alterations and restoration.


Farmhouse, mid-C17 with a secondary rear range, an attached former byre now a cottage and a detached bank barn.

MATERIALS: local slatestone walls, rendered and painted to the house, with a graduated Westmorland slate roof.

PLAN: the original farmhouse with a two-unit plan of firehouse and parlour, the latter formerly sub-divided into a buttery, and a secondary rear range. Attached to the left is the original byre, now a cottage, and attached to the right is a single-storey lean-to structure. A formerly detached bank barn is now attached to the south east corner of the latter.


FARMHOUSE AND ATTACHED FORMER BYRE: windows are mostly fitted with C21 timber casements and have flush, slate lintels and slightly projecting sills. The symmetrical south elevation of the farmhouse has two-storeys and three bays with a boulder plinth beneath a pitched roof of slate, with a substantial chimney stack to the left end and a later, slighter chimney stack to the right end. The centrally-placed entrance has a C21 gabled porch, flanked to either side by a pair of windows, and there are three first floor windows. There is a slate drip course. Attached to the left is a two-storey, two-bay cottage (formerly a BYRE) under a pitched roof of slate: this has traces of a boulder plinth and there is a blocked byre entrance now occupied by a window with windows to either side, with a continuous timber lintel and a slate dripstone above. The right return has an attached single-storey lean-to structure with enlarged garage doors, and the left return has an attached, C21 single-story lean-to, with original window openings above with timber lintels and slate drip stones. The rear elevation of the former byre has a blocked entrance, opposing that to the front elevation, and a window opening to the right, both with slate dripstones; above there is a single small window with a leaded glass frame. The rear elevation of the farmhouse is mostly obscured by a gabled range with a chimneystack to the apex; there is an entrance to the right end and a single ground floor and two first floor window openings. To the left, the original rear wall of the house has evidence of a boulder plinth.

BANK BARN: a rectangular bank barn set at right-angles to the farmhouse has elongated quoins and a boulder plinth, beneath a pitched roof with a C21 wrestler ridge. A steeply angled ramp (rebuilt C21) to the south gable gives access to an enlarged original upper floor entrance. Access to the underbyre is through an original doorway with a timber lintel at the right end, with a window to the left; there is a continuous drip mould above both. There is a modern inserted opening to the left with rebuilt section of walling above. The rear elevation has a blocked opening with a timber lintel to the ground floor.


FARMHOUSE: unified by oak structural features and fixtures and fittings of C17 and C18 date throughout. The main entrance (with a C21 double-thickness replacement door) opens into the firehouse, which is spanned by a substantial chamfered ceiling beam supporting rafters with stop chamfers. The inglenook to the west gable is lit from the south by a former fire window, and it has a substantial, chamfered bressummer beam with chamfer stops and an inserted chimneybreast and fireplace. To the left of the latter within the inglenook, there is a tall alcove, containing a stone shelf with double-door oak cupboards with butterfly hinges. To the right of the inglenook there is a full-height, narrow recess, fitted with a crude plank and batten door, interpreted as a bread oven. To the right on the original rear wall of the house there is a small, square recess with a pair of salt drawers. The firehouse is separated from the parlour by a plank-and-muntin panelled screen; a square-headed opening to the parlour has a plank and batten door of three wide planks with strap hinges of a roughly fleur-de-lis design and a simple wooden latch. The rear of this door has a single apotropaic mark in the form of a daisy wheel. There is a similar door in the north end of the screen (which formerly opened to the buttery). The parlour and buttery are now a single space, and a substantial waney-edged, chamfered ceiling beam runs from east to west supporting similarly waney ceiling joists, mostly with prominent stop chamfers. Notches on the beam have been suggested as the fixings for a former screen between the parlour and buttery. To the rear range is a kitchen and utility room with modern fittings throughout. There is a blocked opening with a timber lintel in the original rear wall of the two-unit house, and original ceiling beams with C21 rafters. The interior of the attached lean-to retains elements of an historic roof structure. Inserted into the right end of the inglenook an enclosed stair, entered through a plank door, rises to the first floor. This has timber lower and upper steps, the remainder is stone and it has a replacement timber balustrade. The first floor has broad wooden floor boards and oak panelled doors, some with upright handles with decorative ends. Elements of the original oak roof structure are visible in the form of several substantial, chamfered trusses. Oak-panelled partitions divide the original loft space into three rooms: that immediately to the right of the stair has burn marks on the inside of the timber panel adjacent to the door, and the location of the former smoke hood are visible within the gable wall; it is reported that further remains of lath and plaster associated with the smoke hood are retained behind the wall immediately above the inserted stair. The rooms above the later rear range have modern fittings.

The interior of the FORMER BYRE (now cottage) was not inspected (2018).

BANK BARN: a pegged timber roof structure composed of re-used adzed and waney timbers and comprises a single triangular truss with double-purlins and a C21 replacement ridge piece.


Books and journals
Brunskill, RW, Traditional Buildings of Cumbria, (2002)
Denyer, S, Traditional Buildings and Life in The Lake District, (1991)


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

The listed buildings are shown coloured blue on the attached map. Pursuant to s1 (5A) of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 (‘the Act’) structures attached to or within the curtilage of the listed building but not coloured blue on the map, are not to be treated as part of the listed building for the purposes of the Act. However, any works to these structures which have the potential to affect the character of the listed building as a building of special architectural or historic interest may still require Listed Building Consent (LBC) and this is a matter for the Local Planning Authority (LPA) to determine.

End of official listing

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