Pages 212-216

An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Herefordshire, Volume 2, East. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1932.

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In this section


(O.S. 6 in. (a)XIV, S.E., (b)XV, S.W., (c)XXI, N.E., (d)XXI, S.E., (e)XXII, N.W.)

Whitbourne is a large parish, on the E. border of the county, 5 m. N.W. of Bromyard. The church is the principal monument and contains a mediæval cope in the N. aisle. Four of the houses retain remains of mediæval crutch-construction.


e(1). Parish Church of St. John the Baptist (Plate 7) stands on the E. side of the parish. The walls are of local sandstone with dressings of the same material; the roofs are tiled. The S. doorway and part of the S. wall of the Nave are of late 12th-century date, but the rest of the nave and the Chancel were re-built in the 13th century. Towards the end of the 14th century the West Tower was added and late in the 15th century the chancel was probably shortened and the E. wall re-built. The church was restored in 1866 when the Organ Chamber and the North Aisle and arcade were built; the South Porch was added in 1887.

Among the fittings the mediæval cope is noteworthy.

Architectural Description—The Chancel (23¼ ft. by 18½ ft.) has a late 15th-century E. window of four cinque-foiled lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred head. In the N. wall are two windows, the eastern an early 14th-century window of one trefoiled ogee light and the western of the 13th century and of one trefoiled light. In the S. wall is a single-light early 14th-century window, almost entirely restored; farther W. is a modern arch. The chancel-arch is modern.

Whitbourne, the Parish Church of St. John the Baptist

The Nave (54½ ft. by 22¾ ft.) has a modern N. arcade. In the S. wall are four windows, the easternmost of the 13th century and of one trefoiled light; the second is of later 13th-century date and of one larger trefoiled light with a moulded label; the late 14th-century third window is of three trefoiled ogee lights in a square head; the westernmost window is similar but of two lights and completely restored externally; the late 12th-century S. doorway has a round head of two orders, the inner chamfered and continuous and the outer with cheveron-ornament and a moulded label; the jambs have each an attached shaft with scalloped capital and moulded abacus and base.

The West Tower (12 ft. square) is of late 14th-century date and of three stages with an embattled parapet and pinnacles at the angles, probably added in the 17th or 18th century. The two-centred tower-arch is of three continuous chamfered orders. In the W. wall is a window all modern externally except for part of the jambs. The second stage has, in the E. wall, a square-headed doorway to the nave-roof; in the S. wall is a square-headed window. The bell-chamber has, in each wall, a window of two trefoiled lights in a two-centred head; above the S. window is a trefoil-headed panel enclosing a shield.

Fittings—Bells: 18th-century, except perhaps the sanctus, which is inaccessible. Chair (Plate 43): in chancel—with scrolled front legs and rail, carved and pierced back and cresting with turned side-posts, possibly late 17th-century, but of doubtful antiquity. Chest: In second stage of tower—'dug-out' chest with iron straps and hinges and two hasps, probably mediæval. Communion Table: In chancel—with turned and slightly bulbous legs, enriched rails and shaped brackets, early 17th-century, lengthened and top modern. Font (Plate 52): round bowl with star-shaped decoration and a crude Agnus Dei, round stem with necking, late 12th-century. Monument and Floor-slabs. Monument: In tower—on N. wall, to William Johnson, S.T.P., Archdeacon of Hereford and rector of the parish, 1697–8. Floor-slabs: In organ-chamber—(1) to . . ., 1646; (2) to Thomas (?) Bach, M.A., 1632; (3) to Samuel Birch, 1704, and Elizabeth (Leycester) his first wife. Miscellanea: Re-set in E. wall, 12th-century moulded voussoir; re-set in rear-arch of S. doorway, head-corbel; re-set in N.E. buttress of tower, corbel with two heads; re-set in N.E. buttress of tower—head-corbel. In N. aisle—on N. wall, parts of a late 15th-century cope, body of red velvet embroidered with the Assumption, Seraphim, eagles and flowers, hood or collar embroidered with a Majesty and orphreys with figures of St. Bartholomew and probably St. James, St. Matthew, St. John and David, head of Christ perhaps part of another vestment.

The Lych Gate, at the S.W. corner of the churchyard, is probably of the 16th century and was restored in 1911. It has oak bed and roof-plates with three posts on each side and a central post under the middle tie-beam; the middle posts, on each side, have curved braces to the plate and straight braces to the tie-beam.



e(2). Whitbourne Court, house and moat, S.E. of the church. The House stands on the site of a manor-house of the bishops of Hereford. It is very largely a modern building, but incorporates some work in the central range which may be mediæval, and a block of masonry in the N. wing is perhaps of the same age. Inside the building the S. room, above the hall, is lined with early 17th-century panelling; the fireplace (Plate 64) has fluted side-pilasters and an overmantel divided into three bays by fluted pilasters; the middle bay has an oval panel with straps and the side bays each an arched panel. There are some re-used 17th-century doors. The roof of the central block incorporates work of 16th-century or earlier date, including two trusses with curved braces and cambered collars.

The Moat encloses an oval island, except on the W. side where it has been filled in. There are traces of an inner bank on the N.E. side of the island.

Condition—Of house, good.

e(3). House (Plate 34), on the N.E. side of the road, 120 yards N.W. of the church, is of two storeys with attics, timber-framed and with tile and slate-covered roofs. It was built late in the 16th century on an L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the N. and W. and with a staircase-wing in the angle. The timber-framing is exposed and on the N.W. is an original chimney-stack with two brick shafts; these have moulded bases and are enriched with ziz-zag ornament and pellets respectively; the capping is modern. Inside the building much of the framing is exposed. The S.E. room has original moulded ceiling-beams. By the staircase are three original doors with strap-hinges.


Monuments (4–45)

The following monuments, unless otherwise described, are of the 17th century and of two storeys, timber-framed and with tile-covered roofs. Most of the buildings have exposed external timber-framing and internal ceiling-beams.

Condition—Good or fairly good, unless noted.

e(4). House, now two tenements, on the S.W. side of the road, opposite (3), is of mediæval origin and retains two crutch-trusses to the S. of the central chimney-stack. The rest of the main block is of early 17th-century date and there are late 17th-century additions on the E. and W. The two crutch-trusses are 15 ft. apart and have heavy tie-beams and chamfered purlins.

e(5). The Nutshell, cottage, 150 yards N.W. of the church, has a later addition on the W.

e(6). Cottage, on the N.E. side of the road, 250 yards N.W. of the church, has been heightened and the roof re-built, probably in the 18th century.

e(7). Bradbourne's Farm (Plate 32), house, 100 yards N.N.W. of (6), is of mediæval date and of two bays with three crutch-trusses, two being incorporated in the end walls. The roof was raised in the 18th century and the W. front faced in stone. The crutch-trusses are of an acutely pointed type, perhaps indicating an early date. Against the W. wall of the N.W. room is a moulded wall-plate, perhaps of the 15th-century. The adjoining room has an early 17th-century door.

e(8). Brook Cottage, opposite (7), has a modern addition on the W.

c(9). Fincher's Farm, house and barns, 700 yards N.W. of the church. The House is of mediæval date with a 17th-century extension or rebuilding on the W. The original part has two crutch-trusses, 13 ft. apart and an original S.E. angle-post with a small triangular-headed niche cut in it.

The Barns, S.W. and S.E. of the house, are of late 17th-century date.

c(10). Cottage, on the E. side of the road, 150 yards N.E. of (9). The roof has been heightened.

e(11). Cottage, 140 yards N.N.E. of (10).

e(12). Cottage, on the W. bank of the Teme, 550 yards N.N.E. of the church, has a roof of corrugated iron.

b(13). Teme Side, cottage, 1,460 yards N. of the church, is of two storeys with attics.

b(14). Tedney, house, about 1¼ m. N.N.E. of the church, is built of brick. The S.W. range is old but the rest of the house is modern.

b(15). Cottage, 400 yards W. of (14), is of two storeys with attics and is of T-shaped plan with the cross-wing at the W. end.

b(16). Cottage, on the edge of the parish, about 1½ m. N. of the church.


a(17). Cottage, at Hungry Dene, 1 m. N.N.W. of the church.

a(18). Little Tedney, house, 300 yards S.S.E. of (17), is of L-shaped plan. The roof of the W. wing has been heightened.

a(19). Cottage, 120 yards W. of (18).


a(20). Cottage, on the S.E. side of the road, 200 yards S.W. of Whitbourne Ford.

c(21). Cottage, two tenements, on the E, side of the road, ¾ m. N.W. of the church, is of two dates; the roof of the S. half has been raised and covered with corrugated iron.

c(22). Rosemore Farm, house, about ¾ m. W.N.W. of the church, is of two storeys with attics. It was built c. 1600 on an irregular plan, roughly T-shaped, with the main or cross-wing at the E. end. There are modern additions on the E. and W. Inside the building the kitchen, in the main wing, has original moulded ceiling-beams and a fireplace with a wide triangular head.

c(23). Smeeths, or Smeathes, house, about 750 yards W.N.W. of the church, has a modern addition connecting the house with a contemporary outbuilding extending at right angles to it.

c(24). Poplands Farm, house, 500 yards S.W. of the church, is of two storeys with cellars and attics. The W. wing is of c. 1600, and the larger E. block was built late in the 17th or early in the 18th century. This block is of brick and has a band-course between the storeys. Inside the building the W. wing has original moulded ceiling-beams. The staircase, in the E. wing, has turned balusters and moulded rails.

c(25). Cottage, on the W. side of the road, about 730 yards W. of (24).

c(26). Wishmore Farm, house, 100 yards S. of (25), has a cross-wing at the W. end and a later extension on the E.

c(27). Lower Poswick, house and barn, about 1 m. W. of the church. The House is of two storeys with cellars and attics. It is of irregular plan with a cross-wing in the middle. Between this and the W. wing are remains of a mediæval crutch-truss, but the rest of the building is of 17th-century date. The chimneystacks have brick shafts with diagonal pilaster-strips. Inside the building, on the first floor, is some re-set 17th-century panelling with lozenge-shaped enrichment.

The Barn, N.W. of the house, incorporates two mediæval crutch-trusses with two collars.

c(28). Poswick Lodge, house and barn, 100 yards N.W. of (27). The House is of two storeys with attics and of two dates in the 17th century, with a large modern addition on the E. Inside the building are some original moulded ceiling-beams and a staircase with original flat wavy balusters.

The Barn, N. of the house, is of three storeys, partly re-built in brick.

c(29). Cottage, on the S.W. side of the road, 700 yards W. of (28).

c(30). Summer Place, house, on Badley Wood Common, nearly 2 m. W. of the church, has an original moulded ceiling-beam in the middle room.

c(31). Linceter Farm, outbuilding, 500 yards W.S.W. of (30), N.E. of the modern farmhouse, is perhaps the original farmhouse. It has a cross-wing at the N. end, which is rather earlier than the rest of the building.

a(32). The Hole, house, in the N.W. angle of the parish, nearly 2½ m. W.N.W. of the church, was built late in the 16th or early in the 17th century and has a modern addition on the S.


c(33). Longlands Farm, house, about 1¼ m. W.S.W. of the church, is of two storeys partly with cellars and attics. The S.W. wing is an addition of c. 1700 and is built of brick with a corbelled string-course between the storeys; the chimney-stack has a series of diagonal pilaster-strips or nibs. The chimney-stack of the original wing has grouped diagonal shafts. Inside the S.W. wing is a fireplace with a bolection-moulded surround, and some turned balusters at the head of the staircase, all of c. 1700.

c(34). Moors, cottage, 550 yards E.S.E. of (33).

c(35). Moorhall, house, on the N. side of the road, about 1 m. S.W. of the church, has modern additions at the back.


c(36). Huntlands, house and barn, 550 yards E.S.E. of (35). The House may incorporate some portions of mediæval work but is largely a 17th-century building with an 18th-century extension on the N.

The Barn, N.W. of the house, has a corrugated iron roof.

c(37). Old Gaines, house and barns, about 1 m. S.S.W. of the church. The House is partly of early 16th-century date, but the E. and W. portions have been re-built or added c. 1600. The central chimney-stack has 17th-century grouped shafts with diagonal nibs on the faces. The W. gable has diagonal framing. Inside the building there is a moulded bracket under one of the ceiling-beams. The roof is of king and queen-post construction.

The Barns stand S.W. of the house; one has a corrugated iron roof.

c(38). Cop Castle, cottage, ½ m. W. of (37).

c(39). Cottage, on the N. side of Bringsty Common, over 1½ m. S.W. of the church.

c(40). Cottage, ¼ m. E.S.E. of (39).

c(41). Cottage, 250 yards S.S.W. of (40). The roof has been heightened.

c(42). Cottage (Plate 27), 160 yards S. of (41), and 1¾ m. S.W. of the church.

c(43). Lower Elmores End, house and stable, 200 yards S.E. of (42) and 1¾ m. S.W. of the church. The House is of modified H-shaped plan with the crosswings at the N.E. and S.W. ends. The main block was built in the 16th century and the S.W. wing and the projecting part of the N.E. wing were added in the 17th century. Inside the building are some moulded ceiling-beams and some 17th-century doors.

The Stable, N. of the house, is partly stone-built.

d(44). Upper Elmores End, house, 230 yards E.S.E. of (43), is of two storeys with cellars and attics. It is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the S.W. and S.E. and was built probably in 1655, the date on a timber in the N.E. wall. The structure, however, appears to incorporate earlier material.

d(45). Hamish Park, house, 2 m. S.S.W. of the church, is of three storeys with brick walls. It was built early in the 18th century and has plain band-courses between the storeys. Some of the windows retain their original frames with mullion and transom. Inside the building the upper part of the staircase has original turned balusters and handrail.