An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Herefordshire, Volume 3, North West. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1934.
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18 DILWYN (C.d.)
c(1). Parish Church of St. Mary (Plate 97) stands in the village. The walls are of local sandstone rubble and ashlar with dressings of the same material; the roofs are covered with slates. The earliest part of the existing structure is the West Tower, built c. 1200 as an addition to an earlier nave of which the gable-weathering remains on the E. face of the tower. Some part of the S. wall of this nave may be incorporated in the present S. wall, and the existence of a N. aisle is indicated by the survival of a pilaster buttress on the W. wall, N. of the tower. In the second half of the 13th century a complete rebuilding of the rest of the church was undertaken, the main axis of the building being set well to the N. of that of the earlier church; the new work consisted of a Chancel, Nave, North and South Aisles; by this arrangement the S. arcade aligned with the middle of the tower-arch, which seems to have been replaced by a half arch butting on to the W. end of the arcade; much 12th-century material was re-used in the E. end of the chancel; the tower was heightened at the same period. The North Vestry was added soon after, and the North Transept is a mid 14th-century addition together with the adjoining stair-turret. In the 15th century the clearstorey was heightened and new windows inserted. The South Porch was added early in the 16th century. The timber spire was added or re-built probably in the 18th century. The church was restored in 1867, 1875, 1882, and 1904.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (38¾ ft. by 21¾ ft.) has an E. wall with clasping and intermediate buttresses largely of 12th-century material in the lower part, but having the late 13th-century string-course carried round the buttresses. The windows are all of late 13th-century date. The E. window is of three lights, two trefoiled and one cinque-foiled and with a large trefoil in the two-centred head and a moulded label; the rear-arch springs from foiled shoulders to the splays; in the gable is a lancet-light. In the N. wall are two windows, the eastern of two cinque-foiled lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head with a moulded label; the western window is similar, but with trefoiled lights; the vestry doorway has moulded jambs and segmental-pointed head; further W. is a modern arch. In the S. wall are three windows, the easternmost and westernmost are uniform with the corresponding windows in the N. wall; the middle window is of one trefoiled light with a moulded label; W. of it is a doorway (Plate 44) with moulded jambs and cinque-foiled head with a moulded label; the W. half of the S. wall has a battering plinth, and is perhaps earlier than the remainder of the wall. The late 13th-century chancel-arch is two-centred and of three chamfered orders, the two outer continuous on the W. side and the inner springing from triple attached shafts with common moulded capitals and hollow-chamfered abaci and moulded and splayed bases; the S. capital has wedge-shaped ornament; the arch has a chamfered label, with large bracket-stops; above the arch are two round windows.
The Nave (Plate 98) (59 ft. by 21¾ ft.) has 13th-century N. and S. arcades of five bays with two-centred arches of two chamfered orders with chamfered labels, those on the N. with two old carved head-stops; the columns are cylindrical with moulded capitals and bases; two capitals have a small zig-zag ornament; the N.E. respond has a triple-shafted corbel with a moulded capital and tapering base ending in a fish-tail; the N.W. respond has a simple moulded corbel; the S.E. and S.W. responds have corbels similar to the N.E. respond, but with a moulded terminal. The original clearstorey had on each side four lancet windows set above the piers; two on the N. and one on the S. remain open, but the others have been partly destroyed or blocked. The 15th-century clearstorey has two-light windows in square heads, two on the N. side and four on the S.; the N. windows have trefoiled, and the S. windows cinque-foiled, heads to the lights. The early 14th-century W. window is of two trefoiled ogee lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head.
The North Transept (25¼ ft. by 21 ft.) has, in the E. wall, a re-set late 13th-century window, formerly of two lights, but now of a single cinque-foiled light with a moulded label; further S. is the lower doorway to the 14th-century roof-loft staircase; it has chamfered jambs and two-centred head; the circular staircase has assembly-numerals on the steps; the upper doorway, towards the nave, is square-headed; it was apparently intended to carry the staircase up to the roof, but this seems not to have been completed. The 14th-century N. window of the transept is of three trefoiled ogee lights with net-tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded label. In the W. wall is a re-set late 13th-century window of two cinque-foiled lights with a circle in a two-centred head; further S. is a 14th-century half-arch of two chamfered orders dying on to the wall.
The North Aisle (9 ft. wide) is of late 13th-century date, and has, in the N. wall, two windows, the eastern of two trefoiled lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head and the western similar, but with a cinquefoil in the head; the N. doorway, now blocked, has chamfered jambs, two-centred head and label. In the W. wall is a straight joint below the W. arch of the N. arcade.
The South Aisle (8½ ft. wide) is mainly of late 13th-century date. The E. window has had the tracery replaced by plain work in comparatively modern times; the opening with its two-centred head is original. In the S. wall are four windows, the easternmost of two cinque-foiled lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head; the second window is of two trefoiled lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head; the third window is of two pointed lights with a four-cornered opening in the two-centred head; the westernmost window is of two trefoiled lights; the early 16th-century S. doorway forms part of the design of the porch; it has moulded jambs and two-centred arch; the outer rolls of the jambs have bands at the springing-level and are continued up to form the sides of tall panels flanking the doorway; the whole is set in a recess with moulded jambs and square head; the panels have trefoiled heads, and at half their height are moulded brackets for images.
The West Tower (16½ ft. square) is of three stages (Plate 10) with a battered plinth and an embattled parapet largely of 18th-century brickwork. The two lower stages are of late 12th-century date and have clasping and intermediate buttresses, that on the N. face removed probably in the 18th century. The original tower-arch seems to have been destroyed when the S. arcade was built, and replaced by a half-arch butting against the N. side of the arcade-wall; the arch is of three chamfered orders, the two outer continuous and the inner resting on triple attached shafts with a common moulded capital and moulded bases. In the N. wall is a doorway probably of the 18th century. The S. and W. walls have each a small lancet-window pierced through the central buttress; the labels have dog-tooth ornament. The second stage has in the S. and W. walls a single light with a slightly pointed head and jambs with reeded mouldings; the N. window is a plain lancetlight. The bell-chamber is a 13th-century addition, and has in each wall a single-light window, those on the E. and W. with pointed heads, but the other two altered when the modern clock was inserted. The spire is probably of the 18th century.
The South Porch (Plate 99) is of early 16th-century date and of two bays. The tall outer archway has moulded and shafted jambs and two-centred head. Between the bays of the side walls is a moulded respond carried up to support the roof-truss; each bay has a window of two trefoiled ogee lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head; the reveals on both faces are moulded.
The Roof of the chancel is of plain trussed-rafter type, and probably of mediæval date. The roof of the vestry has old timbers. The 15th-century roof of the nave is of flat pitch and of seven bays, with moulded tie-beams and wall-posts, curved braces with foliage carved on the spandrels, moulded subsidiary ribs with foliage-bosses and two shields bearing tools. The 14th-century roof of the N. transept is low-pitched and of three bays with chamfered tie-beams, short central posts and carved central bosses on the soffits of the tie-beams. The early 16th-century roof of the S. porch is of two bays with a moulded central tie-beam continuous with the stone responds supporting it; this and the end tie-beams have short upright posts supporting the ridge.
Fittings—Brackets: In chancel—on E. wall, square moulded shelf with ball-ornament and moulded bracket below, early 14th-century. In nave—on first pier of N. arcade, polygonal moulded shelf with splayed underside cut back into three points, late 13th-century; on first pier of S. arcade, half-round, moulded and enriched shelf with scalloped soffit, 13th-century. In S. aisle— on N. splay of E. window, moulded shelf, 13 th or 14th-century; on S. splay, plain rounded shelf. Coffin-lids: In S. aisle—at W. end, (1) with ornamental cross having round head with rayed spokes (Plate 47); (2) fragment with intersecting curves in relief; (3) part of head only with elaborate circular cross-head; on S. wall, (4) fragment with eight-armed cross-head; on W. wall, (5) fragment with zig-zag band at top, sunk quatre-foiled cross and upper part of large shield-of-arms, paly a bend between six (?) martlets a scutcheon ermine, possibly a form of Delabere, added initials, and date H.M. 1657; (6) fragment with cross-head in circle; (7) part of double slab with two ornamental crosses divided by a free stem; all the above late 13 th or early 14th-century; (8) with engrailed cross on stepped calvary and marginal inscription in black-letter to Thomas Revell (?), probably 15 th-century. Re-used in base of S.W. buttress of porch; (9) fragment only, late 13th-century. Fonts (Plate 58): In S. aisle—at W. end, (1) round tapering bowl, cracked, 12th-century; (2) deep octagonal bowl continuously moulded, panelled stem with rounded divisions and moulded base, 14th or 15th-century. Glass: In chancel—in middle S. window, quatre-foiled panel (Plate 100) with border and two figures of angels swinging censers, partly restored, also some fragments made up with modern glass, 14th-century. Lockers: In chancel—in N. wall, recess with cinque-foiled head, rebated reveals and moulded label, late 13th-century. In N. transept—in N. wall, rectangular with rebated reveals, 14th-century. Monument and Floor-slabs. Monument: In chancel—in N. wall, tomb-recess (Plate 78) with effigy, recess with hollow-chamfered and segmental-pointed head, enriched with ball-flower ornament, moulded label with crockets, head-stops and finial, side-shafts with carved finials; effigy (Plate 64) of man in mail armour with knee-cops, surcoat to below knees, hands grasping sword, crossed legs, feet on lion, shield on left arm with arms probably of Talbot, c. 1300–10. Floor-slabs: In nave—at W. end, (1) large slab (Plate 66) with indents of two figures, perhaps a priest and a civilian, under double canopy, with remains of marginal inscription, indents formerly filled with composition or thin stone or marble inlay, of which small portions remain, early 15 th-century; added inscriptions to T.R., 1690 and A.R., 1682. In S. aisle —at W. end, (2) to Thomas (?) Hammond, M.A., vicar, 1683, with cup, book, sun, large initials T.H. and A.D., etc. In tower—(3) to Margaret . . ., 1685; (4) to . . . and Margaret his wife, 1687; (5) to Edward . . ., 1711; (6) to Ann, wife of John Skinner, 1682. Piscinæ: In chancel—recess with cinque-foiled head and label, defaced drain, late 13th-century. In N. transept—in E. wall, recess with trefoiled head and label with nail-head enrichment, foiled drain cut back, late 13th-century. In S. aisle—in S. wall, recess with trefoiled head and octofoiled drain, late 13th or 14th-century. Plate: includes cup of 1662 with the date 1663 on base and cover-paten with the same mark and date. Screens: Between chancel and nave (Plate 101)—of five bays including central doorway, doorway with flat arch in a square head with carved monsters in the spandrels, and above, a three-light opening with trefoiled and sub-cusped ogee heads, and tracery in a four-centred head; similar three-light openings to side bays; lower panels with trefoiled and sub-cusped heads (Plate 101), with carved spandrels, close panelling removed; moulded posts with carved male heads (Plate 101) at the base, 15 th-century, vaulting and loft modern. Across opening of N. transept—parclose (Plate 101) of eleven bays and doorway between eighth and ninth bays from the E.; doorway with cusped head and trefoiled lights above; side bays with trefoiled ogee and traceried heads; moulded posts, those flanking doorway and forming main divisions with pinnacled buttresses; close lower panels; 15 th-century. On N. and W. sides of E. bay of S. aisle—parcloses (Plate 101), that on N. of seven, that on W. of three bays, all with trefoiled ogee and traceried heads, moulded posts and cornice; doorway in W. screen with two heads above similar to side bays, early 15th-century. Sedile: In chancel—sill of S.E. window carried down to form seat. Tiles: In S. aisle—at W. end, slip-tiles with leaves, fleur-de-lis, arms of Beauchamp and Delabere impaling another coat with martlets, etc., 14th-century. Miscellanea: In N. aisle—on sill of N.W. window, scratched design of a cross formed of five sub-divided squares, probably for the game of nine men's morris. In chancel—against S. wall, square stone arm to former seat, late 13th-century.
c(2). Moat (Plan, p. xxix), 260 yards S. of the church, is partly wet and encloses a nearly circular area about 165 ft. in diameter and rising slightly above the surrounding ground and with remains of a rampart. Immediately S.E. of the moat is a pond of irregular form.
b(4). Luntley Court (Plate 21), house and outbuildings 1½ m. W.N.W. of the church. The House is of two storeys, timber-framed and with tiled roofs. It was built probably early in the 17th century, and at that date seems to have consisted of a main block with crosswings at the S.E. and N.W. ends. About 1674, the date on the porch, the house was greatly altered and enlarged, extensive additions being made along the N.W. side and at the N.W. end and a wing added on the S.W. side; at the same time the back half of the S.E. cross-wing was re-built and the porch added. Little of the original external work of the house was left exposed, except the front end of the S.E. cross-wing, but a gabled front of similar character and perhaps from the other cross-wing was re-erected in an outbuilding.
The N.E. front (Plate 103) is in five bays all with exposed timber-framing; all except the last bay to the N.W. are gabled. The first bay is of the original early 17th-century construction and has a range of square panels with ornamental braces at the base of the gable. The second, fourth and fifth bays are of late 17th-century date, as is the projecting porch forming the third bay. This porch (Plate 102) is of two storeys, of which the upper one projects on moulded and enriched bressummers with elaborately shaped and moulded brackets at the angles and turned pendants; the porch is entered by two square-headed doorways at the sides with moulded frames, above them is the date 1674. The front of the porch and the sides beyond the doorways have ranges of turned balusters with round arches between them at the top; these arches have disappeared on the S.E. side. The gable has dentilled and enriched bargeboards, and the eaves have shaped brackets and enriched panels between them. The inner doorway, to the house, has a moulded frame and a shaped board within the square head; the battened door is nail-studded and has strap-hinges with fleur-de-lis ends and a drop-handle. A window in the fourth bay retains part of its moulded frame. The other elevations have exposed timber-framing, mostly of late 17th-century date.
Interior—Various rooms have exposed and chamfered ceiling-beams. In the Library is a moulded ceiling-beam, and the adjoining early 17th-century staircase has moulded strings and rails, flat shaped balusters and square newels cut to the form of the balusters; the risers are panelled. In the dining-room are two posts with shouldered heads; between this room and the drawing-room is a doorway with an original moulded frame and a shaped board in the head; the battened door has strap-hinges with ornamental ends. A door in the N.E. wall of the store-room has an original moulded frame. On the first floor, at the head of the stairs, are three original doorways with chamfered frames and shaped boards in the heads; there is one old battened door with strap-hinges.
The Outbuildings include a cow-house, two barns, a wood-store and a pigeon-house. The Cow-house (Plate 36), E. of the house, is of two storeys, timber-framed. The gabled N.W. front is closely similar to the original end of the S.E. cross-wing of the house. It would thus appear to be a portion of the original house, probably re-erected when the house was enlarged; the two doors have moulded frames with shaped head-boards, one of which is not in position; the doors are old or made up of old work; the gable has a dentilled base-board and barge-boards. The Barn, E. of the cow-house, is a timber-framed building, probably of late 17th-century date. The Barn, now a wood-store, N. of the house, is timber-framed and of late 17th or early 18th-century date. It is of three bays. The Garden-house, W. of the house, is a late 17th-century timber building, re-erected and adapted to its present purpose. The Pigeonhouse (Plate 102), N.W. of the house, is a square timber-framed structure, gabled on each face and with a square lantern on the crossing of the roofs. It was built in 1673 and has exposed framing in squares. The doorway (Plate 45), in the E. wall, has a moulded frame with a shaped and carved board in the head, and the date cut on the lintel. The barge-boards are dentilled and otherwise enriched and have pendants at the apexes and shaped brackets at the base of the gables.
e(5). Swanstone Court, house and outbuilding, nearly 2 m. E.S.E. of the church; the House is of two storeys, timber-framed and with slate-covered roofs. It was built in the 14th century, and to this date belongs the W. end of the main or hall-block and the adjoining W. cross-wing. The main block was re-built in the 18th century, and has an eastern extension which may be of the same or a rather earlier period.
The timber-framing in squares is partly exposed in the original W. wing, and the framing of 17th or early 18th-century date is exposed in the eastern extension. The N. end of the cross-wing has cusped struts in the gable, and the lower parts of the principals are also cusped. Inside the building the W. wall of the main block, formerly of one storey, retains the original framed panels (Plate 35) with large quatrefoils and with a vertical moulding between them. The W. or solar wing retains much of its original roof of three main bays; the main trusses have tie-beams with curved braces and diagonal struts forming, with the principal rafters, cusped openings; the intermediate trusses have collar-beams with curved braces. Other parts of the house have chamfered or moulded ceiling-beams, the latter of the 17th century.
c(6). Great House and outbuildings, 130 yards S.S.W. of the church. The House is of two storeys, timber-framed but much altered and refaced in brick; the roofs are slate-covered. It was built in the 16th or early in the 17th century on an H-shaped plan with the cross-wings at the N.E. and S.W. ends. It was much altered and added to c. 1720–30. The timber-framing is exposed at the back end of the N.E. wing. The other wing retains an original window with moulded frame and mullion, now blocked. Inside the building some of the ceiling-beams are exposed.
The Garden, in front of the house, has two early 18th-century gate piers with wrought-iron gates and an elaborate scrolled overthrow; a second gateway also has a scrolled overthrow. The Outbuildings, E. of the house, include a Granary, Barn and Tallat. The Granary has some exposed timber-framing, and is of three bays. On the framing is a largely defaced inscription. The Barn also has exposed framing, and is of three bays. On the W. gable is a scrolled iron weather-vane. The Tallat, on the N. side of the yard, is also timber-framed. All three buildings are of the 17th century.
The following monuments, unless otherwise described, are of the 17th century and of two storeys, timber-framed and with tile or slate-covered roofs. Most of the buildings have exposed external framing and internal ceiling-beams.
c(7). Cottage, called Perrymead, 50 yards S.W. of the church, is of 16th or 17th-century date, altered, heightened, and added to. Inside the building is some 17th-century panelling with carved enrichments.
c(13). Crown Inn, 20 yards N. of (12), has been entirely refronted and otherwise much altered. Inside the building is some 17th-century panelling, including three enriched and arcaded panels, and one panel inscribed T.C., I.C. It is said to have come from the church.
c(16). Tan House, on the N. side of the road at Dilwyn Common, 500 yards E.N.E. of the church, has a modern brick front. An original bay-window on the N. side has diamond-shaped mullions and a transom.
b(22). Middleton House, about 1 m. N.E. of the church, consists of an outbuilding, formerly the hall, with an 18th-century cottage to the N. The hall, of one storey, was built in the 14th century, but has had a partial floor and a large chimney-stack inserted in the 17th century. The framing, exposed on the N.E. and S.W. sides, is widely spaced. The N.W. and S.W. ends are framed with original crutch-trusses. The central truss, dividing the hall into two bays, is also of crutch-type and has a collar with shaped braces below; above the collar are diagonal struts and a cross-piece or upper collar; these, with the collar itself, are cut on one face only to form trefoils (Plate 39).
b(23). Yew Tree Cottage, two tenements, 40 yards N. of (22), was built probably in the 14th century, and still retains the hall-block and perhaps also the W. cross-wing, though there is no definite evidence of the date of the wing. The hall-block has an inserted floor and chimney-stack, and the W. part has been raised and faced with 18th-century brick on the S. side. The original E. wall is framed with a heavy crutch-truss, and in the adjoining S. wall is a window with two diamond-shaped mullions. Some large framing is exposed in the W. wing. On the W. side is a small bayed window with chamfered frame and mullions. Inside the building the hall has remains of an original central roof-truss of crutch construction with a tie-beam and a curved brace below it; the S. half of the truss has been destroyed by the chimney-stack; against this stack and to the E. of it is a post which perhaps formed part of the original screen or spere-truss. In the wing is a doorway with a 17th-century shaped head.
b(24). Pitch Farm, house, 1 m. N.E. of the church, has a later addition at the back. It is said to have once been used, at any rate partly, as a Baptist chapel. Inside the building is an original doorway with a moulded frame and a door of moulded battens; on the lintel is the inscription "When you go to bed God send you good rest." The late 17th-century staircase has moulded risers and square newels with moulded terminals and moulded handrails. In the upper storey of the back wing is a fireplace with a moulded stone surround.
e(27). Little Dilwyn, house, now two tenements, 1½ m. E. of the church, is of T-shaped plan with the cross-wing at the S.W. end. The upper storey projects at the N.W. end of the cross-wing on a moulded bressummer. Inside the building are some original moulded ceiling-beams.
g(29). The Browns, house, 1,100 yards S. of (28), is of three main bays with braces under the eaves. At the S.E. end is a shaped bracket to the eaves. Inside the building is an original doorway with a four-centred head.
c(30). Lower Chadnor, house and outbuildings, 1½ m. S.S.E. of the church. The House was built early in the 18th century and has a staircase of that date with turned balusters, moulded and pulvinated strings, moulded handrails, and four balusters forming newels. The Outbuildings, though altered, appear to be of the same date as the house.
f(31). Dunwood Farm, house and outbuilding, nearly 2 m. S. of the church. The House was extended N.E. in the 18th century. Inside the building are some original moulded ceiling-beams. The Outbuilding, N.W. of the house, is probably of early 18th-century date.
c(43). Upper Haven Farm, house and outbuilding, 1,450 yards W. of the church. The House has a central cross-wing, and has been partly refaced in brick. The Outbuilding, W. of the house, is partly weather-boarded.
c(46). Upper Dewall Farm, house, nearly 2 m. W.S.W. of the church, is of H-shaped plan with the cross-wings at the N.E. and S.W. ends. The central chimney-stack has three grouped shafts, two of which are set diagonally.
b(50). White House (Plate 32), Luntley, 140 yards N.W. of (4), is of four main bays with braces to the main uprights under the eaves. Inside the building is an original door of moulded battens and a blocked doorway with an arched head.
b(60). Bidney Farm, house, pigeon-house and barn, nearly 1 m. N. of the church. The House is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the S. and E. The S. wing has been much altered and refaced. The upper storey projects on the S. side and E. end of the E. wing, and the gable also projects. In the E. end and on the S. side are two original bay windows with moulded frame, mullions and transom; the angle-posts are panelled. Inside the building, the fireplace in the kitchen has an original lintel with various geometrical panels; a wall-post has a shallow moulded bracket. On the first floor is an original battened door with ornamental strap-hinges, and a doorway has chamfered jambs and a flat pointed head.
The Pigeon-house (Plate 41), W. of the house, is said to have been brought from elsewhere and stands on modern walling. The upper storey is square and has a gabled roof with a square lantern rising from the ridge. The framing is in squares, the panels being enriched with semi-circular cuttings in the middle of each side. The Barn, S.W. of the house, is perhaps of early 18th-century date, and is partly weather-boarded.