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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39 KINGTON RURAL (A.c.)
(O.S. 6 in. (a)X, S.W., (b)X, S.E., (c)XVII, N.W., (d)XVII, N.E., (e)XVII, S.W., (f)XVII, S.E., (g)XXIV, N.W.)
Kington Rural is a parish surrounding Kington town, except on the E. side. Castle Twts and Hergest Court are the principal monuments.
e(1). Castle Twts, mount and bailey earthwork, 1¼ m. S.W. of Kington church, occupies the top of a small irregularly shaped hill, the slopes of which appear to have been artificially steepened to some extent. The S. part of the top appears to have been roughly levelled to form a bailey, with a small motte at its S. end. At the foot of the bailey-scarp on the N.W. is a small irregular terrace with traces of a bank on its W. side. The N.E. part of the hill-top is sloping, and there are indications of an approach-causeway on the E. side. The motte is some 57 ft. in diameter at the base and rises some 8 ft. only above the level of the bailey. The area within the defences is little over half an acre.
e(2). Hergest Court, house, outbuilding and moat, nearly 1¼ m. S.W. of the church. The House is of two storeys with cellars and attics; the walls are partly of stone and partly timber-framed and the roofs are slate-covered. It was the seat of the Vaughan family and is said to have been built c. 1430 for Thomas, second son of Sir Roger Vaughan, on the site of an earlier house; the Welsh bard, Lewis Glyn Cothi, describes the court as having eight strong buildings. About the middle of the 18th century the dilapidated parts of the building with subordinate buildings to the S. were demolished. The existing house forms an L-shaped block with the wings extending towards the S.W. and S.E. The S.W. wing has exposed and close-set timber-framing, probably of the 15th century, on the whole of the N.W. side (Plate 31). The other sides have been refaced. The S.E. wing is a stone structure perhaps of mediæval date; in the angle between the wings is a stone-built projection containing a doorway with chamfered jambs and two-centred head. Inside the building are some exposed ceiling-beams. The kitchen, in the S.E. wing, has a stone fireplace of c. 1500, with moulded jambs and four-centred head; above it is a later moulded shelf. In the S.W. wing is a considerable amount of late 16th or early 17th-century panelling, that in the S.W. room having a frieze, with lozenge-enrichments. A room on the first floor is also partly lined with early 17th-century panelling with a frieze of enriched panels. The early 17th-century staircase (Plate 73) has flat shaped and pierced balusters, square moulded newels with shaped terminals and moulded handrails. On the first floor of the S.E. wing is a blocked mediæval window with a chamfered sill and a moulded wooden cornice. There are also remains of 16th-century colour-decoration.
The Outbuilding, S.W. of the house, is of two storeys; the walls are of stone and the roofs are slate-covered. It was probably built in the 14th century, but has been reduced in height. In the E. wall is an original doorway with rounded jambs and segmental-pointed head. There is a second doorway at the first-floor level, but this has lost its original head, as have two windows, both of which are now plain square-headed openings; a third and smaller window retains its pointed head. The W. wall has a large chimney-projection and a second projection to the ground floor only, finished with a moulded weather-course. In the upper storey are two blocked windows, probably original, and two blocked loops below.
The house and buildings occupy the end of a long and narrow spur of land, the slopes being in part artificially steepened. The river Arrow and a tributary stream run along the S.E. side of the spur, and on the N.W. side is a pool communicating by a channel at the end of the spur with the tributary stream and forming a partial moat.
Condition—Of house, good.
The following monuments, unless otherwise described, are of the 17th century and of two storeys. The walls are of stone and the roofs are slate or stonecovered. Many of the buildings have exposed ceiling-beams.
Condition—Good or fairly good, unless noted.
c(3). Upper House, Lower Hergest, 600 yards W.N.W. of (2), is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the S.E. and S.W. It has been much altered and refaced.
e(4). Upper House, Upper Hergest, nearly 2¼ m. S.W. of the church, is timber-framed. The E. part of the house is rather later in date than the main wing. The framing is partly exposed.
e(5). Bank Farm, house, 280 yards E.S.E. of (4), has modern additions on both sides.
e(6). Mahollam Cottages, house, now three tenements, 2 m. S.W. of the church. The S.W. wing is of mediæval date and of five timber-framed bays divided by crutch-trusses. The upper floor was inserted early in the 17th century and at the same period the S.E. wing, also timber-framed, was added. Some of the framing is exposed. Inside the older wing is a 17th-century staircase with moulded newels, and this wing has a blocked window of two lights cut out of the solid.
Condition—Mostly good, but partly neglected.
e(7). Park Stile Mill, on the W. edge of the parish, 2½ m. S.S.W. of the church, was built probably early in the 18th century.
e(8). Empton Farm, house (Plate 24), 700 yards S.E. of (7), is timber-framed and has a cross-wing at the E. end. The framing is exposed and is set diagonally in the gable of the cross-wing. Inside the building are three original doorways.
e(9). House, at Chickward, 1,050 yards E. of (8), was built probably in the 16th century. Inside the building are two original moulded beams.
e(10). Apostles Farm, house and stables, nearly 2¾ m. S. of the church. The House (Plate 25) is partly timber-framed. The middle part is of mediæval date and has two crutch-trusses incorporated in later partitions. In the 17th century an upper floor was inserted, the building extended towards the E. and the W. cross-wing added. The upper storey projects at the N. end of the cross-wing. Inside the building are some early 17th-century moulded ceiling-beams. The Stables, N. of the house, are of mediæval origin, and of three bays with crutch-trusses. An upper floor has been inserted.
g(11). Cross Farm, house, 350 yards S.S.W. of (10).
f(12). Pound Farm, house, about 1½ m. S. of the church, is of mediæval origin and was originally timber-framed. There are remains of five 14th or 15th-century crutch-trusses, some at any rate with curved braces under the collar-beams and foiled openings above them. One bay of the building is still open to the roof.
f(13). Cottage, at Pembers Oak, 200 yards E. of (12), was originally timber-framed, but has been refronted in brick and stone.
f(14). Stables, formerly cottage, at Birches, nearly 2 m. S.S.E. of the church.
f(15). Lilwall Farm, house, over ½ m. N.N.E. of (14), is partly timber-framed and of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the W. and N. The N. wing is of mediæval origin and retains one crutchtruss. An upper floor was inserted and the W. wing added in the 17th century. Some timber-framing is exposed. Inside the building, a room in the N. wing is lined with early 18th-century panelling and the fireplace (Plate 53) has a moulded surround, shelf and panelled overmantel; there is a similar fireplace in a second room.
f(16). Cottage, on the E. side of the road at Woodbrook, 570 yards N.N.E. of (15), is partly of exposed timber-framing.
c(17). Held, cottage, 1,460 yards W.N.W. of the church, was built late in the 17th or early in the 18 th century.
c(18). Dingle Cottage, ¼ m. N.N.E. of (17).
c(19). Wells Cottage, 360 yards E. of (18), is of late 17th or early 18th-century date.
c(20). Cottage, two tenements, on the N.E. side of a lane, 550 yards N.W. of the church.
d(21). The Steps, cottage, at Floodgates, 420 yards N.W. of the church. The middle part is of early 18th-century date with later extensions at both ends.
d(22). Newton Row, three cottages, 250 yards E. of (21), were built early in the 18th century.
d(23). Quarry Farm, house and farm-buildings, 1,400 yards N. of the church.
d(24). The Rackway, cottage, 370 yards N.N.E. of (23).
b(25). The Bower, house, about 1¼ m. N. of the church, incorporates a timber-framed cottage now cased in stone.
a(26). Holywell (Plate 32), cottage, on the N. edge of the parish, about 1½ m. N.N.W. of the church, is of exposed timber-framing.
d(27). The Cluns, cottage, two tenements, nearly 1½ m. N.E. of the church, is timber-framed and partly plastered.
d(28). Rushock Farm, house, 260 yards S.S.E. of (27), is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the N.E. and N.W. The house has been much altered and added to.
d(29). Old House, 50 yards W. of (28), is timber-framed and of mediæval origin. The original building is of three bays with crutch-trusses, collars and foiled wind-braces. At the N.E. end is a 17th-century extension.
d(30). Lower Barton, house, 1,160 yards N.E. of the church, is timber-framed and plastered and has 18th-century and later additions.
d(31). Dunfield, house, about 1½ m. E.N.E. of the church, is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the S. and W.
f(32). Mound, 1¾ m. S.E. of the church, is circular, 23 yards in diameter and rises 4–5 ft. above the surrounding ground. It is encircled by a dry ditch with traces of an outer rampart on the W. and S. and an outer enclosure on the N.W.
N.B.—For Offa's Dyke, see p. xxx.