Farmstead record WFG 062 - Farmstead: Hole Farm (LA) HBS

Please read our .

Summary

Hole Farm, Great Waldingfield. 19th century farmstead and 15th century farmhouse. Regular courtyard full plan formed by working agricultural buildings, with additional detached elements. The farmhouse is set away from the yard. Partial loss (less than 50%) of the traditional farm buildings. Located within an isolated position.

Location

Grid reference Centred TL 9176 4435 (83m by 97m)
Map sheet TL94SW
Civil Parish GREAT WALDINGFIELD, BABERGH, SUFFOLK

Map

Type and Period (5)

Full Description

Hole Farm, Great Waldingfield. 19th century farmstead and 15th century farmhouse. Regular courtyard full plan formed by working agricultural buildings, with additional detached elements. The farmhouse is set away from the yard. Partial loss (less than 50%) of the traditional farm buildings. Located within an isolated position (S1-6).

Recorded as part of the Farmsteads in the Suffolk Countryside Project. This is a purely desk-based study and no site visits were undertaken. These records are not intended to be a definitive assessment of these buildings. Dating reflects their presence at a point in time on historic maps and there is potential for earlier origins to buildings and farmsteads. This project highlights a potential need for a more in depth field study of farmstead to gather more specific age data.

Hole Farm is a rare 15th century timber-framed brewhouse that once adjoined the domestic hall of the manor of Stanford in Great Waldingfield. It was converted into a domestic farmhouse in its own right in the late-16th or early-17th century, and has since been considerably extended, but retains one of the best preserved medieval roof structures of any building of its type. Its historic importance is increased by the extensive re-use in the 15th century roof of heavily sooted rafter couples dating from the early-13th century. At first sight Hole Farm appears to be a normal domestic farmhouse of c. 1600, with the usual parlour to the right (east), a central hall heated by a brick chimney at its high end and entered by a cross-passage at its low end, and a service room beyond. Close inspection, however, reveals the domestic layout of c. 1600 to be a secondary remodelling of a mid-15th century timber frame that was arranged in a very different and highly unusual manner. The structure extends by an impressive 56 feet from its eastern gable to the evidence of two ‘diamond mullion’ windows in the western gable (now exposed in the kitchen), but is just 15 feet in width internally. Instead of the vertical open hall found in domestic houses, the sooted bay at Hole Farm was L-shaped (often termed ‘boot-shaped’), with its western half floored over. The original layout of Hole Farm bears no resemblance to a domestic building, particularly given the entire absence of first-floor windows in the rear wall. Instead, it represents an exceptionally large and well-preserved mid-15th century brewhouse. Such buildings are rare, with no more than a dozen examples known in East Anglia, although they are more common in South-East England where documentary evidence suggests almost 50% of households possessed them in the late Middle Ages. Some brewhouses were detached, but Hole Farm seems to have been attached to the main manor house. The roof structure is of simple collared rafter construction, without crown posts. Remarkably, the majority of the rafters and collars were re-used in the 15th century from an early-13th roof that was probably salvaged from another open hall on the same site. Around the turn of the 17th century the 15th century brewhouse was converted into a normal domestic house; the medieval open hall in the modern front garden would have been outmoded by this period and would either have been demolished or demoted to serve as a kitchen (S7).

Sources/Archives (7)

  • --- Unpublished document: Alston, L.. 2005. Historical Survey: Hole Farm, Great Waldingfield.
  • <S1> Unpublished document: Campbell, G., and McSorley, G. 2019. SCCAS: Farmsteads in the Suffolk Countryside Project.
  • <S2> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1880s. Ordnance Survey 25 inch to 1 mile map, 1st edition.
  • <S3> Map: Ordnance Survey. c 1904. Ordnance Survey 25 inch to 1 mile map, 2nd edition. 25".
  • <S4> Vertical Aerial Photograph: various. Google Earth.
  • <S5> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1949. Ordnance Survey 6 inch to 1, mile, 3rd edition. 1:10,560.
  • <S6> Map: 1838. Great Waldingfield Tithe Map.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (2)

Record last edited

Nov 10 2022 9:59AM

Comments and Feedback

Do you have any more information about this record? Please feel free to comment with information and photographs, or ask any questions, using the "Disqus" tool below. Comments are moderated, and we aim to respond/publish as soon as possible.