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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, 'Brilley', in An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Herefordshire, Volume 3, North West, (London, 1934) pp. 23-25. British History Online [accessed 23 May 2024].

. "Brilley", in An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Herefordshire, Volume 3, North West, (London, 1934) 23-25. British History Online, accessed May 23, 2024,

. "Brilley", An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Herefordshire, Volume 3, North West, (London, 1934). 23-25. British History Online. Web. 23 May 2024,

In this section

9 BRILLEY (A.d.)

(O.S. 6 in. (a)XXIII, S.E., (b)XXIV, N.W., (c)XXIV, S.W.)

Brilley is a parish on the W. border of the county, 6 m. S.S.W. of Kington. The church, Cwmma Farm and Fernhall are the principal monuments.


b(1). Parish Church of St. Mary stands near the middle of the parish. The walls are of local sandstone rubble with dressings of the same material; the roofs are slate-covered. The font is evidence for the existence of a 12th-century church, but the present building, consisting of Chancel, Nave and North Transept or vestry, seems to have been built late in the 13 th or early in the 14th century. The nave was extended to the W.,and a wooden W. tower built in comparatively modern times. The church was restored in 1862, and the South Porch re-built in 1865; in a second restoration in 1890, the chancel was re-built and the S. porch restored on the old lines. The wooden tower was burnt in 1912 and replaced by the existing West Tower.

The Church, Plan

Architectural Description—The Chancel (25½ ft. by 20 ft.) has a modern E. window. In the N. wall is a late 13 th or early 14th-century window of a single trefoiled light. In the S. wall is a 14th-century window of two trefoiled ogee lights in a square head and a modern doorway. There is no chancel-arch.

The Nave (54 ft. by 20 ft.) has, in the N. wall, a plastered segmental-pointed arch of one chamfered order continued down the jambs; further W. are two modern windows. In the S. wall are three similar windows and a modern doorway.

The North Transept (18¾ ft. by 15¼ ft.) has a late 13th or early 14th-century E. window of two trefoiled lights; there is a similar window in the N. wall; in the S. wall is a 14th-century recess with double hollow-chamfered jambs and ogee head; it is probably the blocked doorway to the former rood-loft staircase.

The South Porch is of timber on dwarf stone walls. It has been re-built, but incorporates much of the original 15th-century woodwork. The outer archway has a cambered tie-beam and moulded braces forming a two-centred arch. The wall-plates are moulded.

The Roof of the chancel has 15th-century hollow-chamfered wall-plates and a central truss with tie-beam, collar and king-post and a simple bracket on the W. face of the king-post; E. of this truss the roof is ceiled, at the tie-beam level, with modern boarding, and W. of it the roof is continuous with that of the nave. The 14th-century roof of the nave is of trussed-rafter and collar-beam type; it has two main trusses, the eastern with tie-beam, collar, principals and struts, all cusped round the openings above the tie-beam; the western truss has tie-beam, king-post and collar; W. of this truss the roof is modern. The 14th-century roof of the N. transept is of trussed rafter and collar-beam type, with king-post trusses against the end walls.

Fittings—Churchyard Cross: S. of the chancel— square stopped base on two square steps and part of square to octagonal shaft, 14th or 15th-century, 18th-century sundial on top. Font: tapering cylindrical bowl with chamfered base, 12th-century. Floor-slabs: In nave—(1) to James Pary and John, 17th-century; (2) to Guilbert Hare, 1669–70, and Margaret his daughter, 1669–70, cast-iron slab (Plate 67), now broken, with achievement-of-arms. Table: In transept —with turned legs, mid 17th-century.



b(2). Tump (Plan, p. xxix) or mound N. of Cwmma Farm and 1¾ m. N.E. of the church, is roughly circular, about 90 ft. in diameter at the base and rising 17½ ft. above the lowest part of the ditch. The ditch is dry, but a stream runs through it on the W. side.


b(3). Cwmma Farm, house and outbuilding about 1½ m. N.E. of the church. The House is of two storeys with cellars; the walls are timber-framed, and the roofs are covered with stone slates. It was built early in the 17th century on an irregular plan, and has a later 17th-century addition on the S.W. The timber-framing is exposed. The S.E. front has a two-storeyed porch with the upper storey projecting on an original moulded bressummer and brackets; the gable also projects on shaped brackets. The outer doorway is probably an insertion and has an arched head; the inner doorway has an original moulded frame. The wall S.W. of the porch has a small pent-roof projecting at the first-floor level; the window below has an original moulded sill. There is a similar pent-roof at the back of the house, and an original window with moulded frame and mullions. Inside the building some of the ceiling-beams are exposed. The original staircase has square newels with moulded terminals, flat shaped balusters and moulded handrails. One doorway has an original moulded frame.

The Cattle-shed adjoins the house on the N.E., and is of six original bays, probably of mediæval date. The heavy beams and joists are exposed and retain traces of colour-decoration in a simple cheveron design.


b(4). Fernhall, house, ¼ m. N.N.E. of (3), is of one storey with attics, timber-framed and with roofs of stone slates. It was built probably late in the 14th or early in the 15th century with a central hall and crosswings at the E. and W. ends; the main roof has now been continued over the E. cross-wing, and an upper floor has been inserted in the hall. Much of the exterior has been refronted, but some of the framing is exposed. Inside the building, the hall retains its original central truss, which is of collar-beam type with struts forming three foiled openings above the collar; there were also cusped braces below the collar-beam. Portions of two crutch-trusses are visible in the end walls of the hall. Many of the ceiling-beams are exposed.


b(5). Kintley Farm, house and outbuilding nearly 1 m. E.N.E. of the church. The House is of two storeys, partly of stone and partly timber-framed; the roofs are covered with slates and stone slates. The timber-framed E. wing is of late 14th or early 15th-century date, but the rest of the house was largely re-built in the 18th century. The old wing has close-set framing, and retains much of its original roof construction; three of the original four bays remain, and the trusses are of collar-beam type with curved braces springing from the wall-posts and forming two-centred arches. Some of the ceiling-beams are exposed.

The Outbuilding, S.E. of the house, is of the 17th century, timber-framed, and of two storeys.

Condition—Of E. wing, bad.

Monuments (6–29)

The following monuments, unless otherwise described, are of the 17th century; the walls are of stone and the roofs are covered with slates or stone slates. Most of the buildings have exposed ceiling-beams.

Condition—Good or fairly good, unless noted.

b(6). Llanhedry, house about 1 m. N.E. of the church, was built probably in the 14th or 15th century with a central hall and cross-wings at the E. and W. ends. It was originally timber-framed, but has been cased with stone. An upper floor has been inserted in the hall. Inside the building are remains of one of the original crutch-trusses of the hall. There is also a 17th-century doorway with a flat triangular head, and elsewhere a panelled door of the same date.

b(7). Pentre Jack, house, 400 yards N.E. of (6), is timber-framed. The middle part of the house may be of mediæval date. Some of the timber-framing is exposed. Inside the building is a little 17th-century panelling.

b(8). Cottage, 110 yards E. of (7), is timber-framed and was built in the 16th century or earlier and subsequently heightened. The framing is exposed.

b(9). Pentre Coed, house, 1½ m. E.N.E. of the church, is partly timber-framed. It is of T-shaped plan with the cross-wing at the S. end. Some of the framing is exposed.

b(10). Little Pentre Coed, cottage, 200 yards W. of (9), is of mediæval date, and retains three original crutchtrusses forming rough arches. Adjoining the cottage is a timber-framed barn.

c(11). Three Hollies, cottage, 1,460 yards E.S.E. of the church, is timber-framed. The framing is partly exposed.

b(12). Green Farm, house and barn about ¾ m. E. of the church. The House has a modern addition on the E. The Barn, S. of the house, is timber-framed.

b(13). Lane Farm, house and barns nearly ¾ m. E.N.E. of the church. The House is partly timber-framed, and has been much altered, added to and refaced in stone. Inside the building are some original moulded ceiling-beams. The Barns, E. of the house and S. of the yard, are timber-framed.

b(14). Crossway Farm, 1,170 yards N.E. of the church, is timber-framed. The framing is exposed.

b(15). Hill Gate, cottage, about 1 m. N.N.E. of the church, is timber-framed.

b(16). Amberstone, cottage, 500 yards N.E. of (15), was originally timber-framed.

b(17). Trenewydd, cottage, 1,200 yards N.N.W. of the church, formed part of a larger building.

c(18). Outbuilding, formerly cottage, at Brilley Green, 980 yards E.S.E. of the church, is timber-framed. The framing is partly exposed.


c(19). Pentre Farm, house, 520 yards S.E. of the church, was probably timber-framed, but has been refaced in stone.

c(20). Brilley Court Farm, house, 550 yards W. of (19), has extensive 18th-century and modern additions. The central part of the building is of two dates, the earlier including the cellar being perhaps of mediæval date; the adjoining block to the W. was built c. 1600. Inside the building the early 17th-century staircase has square newels with turned terminals, turned balusters and moulded hand-rails. The cider-mill and cattleshed adjoining the house on the N. and E. are of 17th or early 18th-century date.

c(21). Lower Bridge Court, house and barn, 1,180 yards S.W. of the church. The House is partly timber-framed, and is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the W. and S. It has been partly re-built. Some of the timber-framing is exposed. The Barn, N. of the house, is timber-framed and weather-boarded.

c(22). Sunny Bank, house, 1 m. S.W. of the church, has some timber-framing in the back wall.

c(23). Pear Tree Hall, cottage, on the N. side of the road about 1¼ m. S.S.W. of the church.

c(24). Rbydspence Inn (Plate 20), on the S.E. side of the road, about 1½ m. S.W. of the church, is a timber-framed building of the 16th century. The close-set framing is mostly exposed, and in front is a two-storeyed porch; the upper storey of the porch projects on the free sides and the outer and inner entrances have segmental heads. There are several original windows with mullions and transoms. The upper storey also projects at the W. end, on shaped brackets with shaped pendants to the angle-posts.

c(25). Bank of Pleasure, cottage, 770 yards N. of (24), has a timber-framed barn at the N.E. end.

c(26). Barn at Bailey Merdy, 520 yards W. of (25), is timber-framed and weather-boarded.

c(27). Pentre Grove, house, about 1¼ m. W. of the church, has a cross-wing at the W. end.

c(28). Wern, house, 500 yards S.E. of (27), is of 14th or 15th-century date, much altered in the 17th century, when an upper floor was inserted in the hall. It now consists of a main block with a cross-wing at the W. end. The main block is divided into four bays by three original crutch-trusses with cambered collar-beams and curved braces forming arches. The cross-wing is said also to retain its mediæval roof.

c(29). Tan House, house and barns, 1,480 yards W.S.W. of the church. The House is timber-framed and has a later extension on the S. Inside the building the ceiling of the principal room is divided into panels by original moulded beams. The Barns N.E. and N.W. of the house are timber-framed and weather-boarded.


a(30), Pen-tŵyn Camp (Plan, p. xxix), 2 m. W.S.W. of the church, occupies the N.E. end of a hill-top (1,079 ft.). It is a small work of no great strength and appears to have been roughly oval in plan with an internal area of 1¾ acres. The defences (Plate 4) on the W. consist of a double rampart with an outer and a broad medial ditch; the inner rampart is of slighter construction than the outer. On the S. there are now no defences, but the line is preserved approximately by the present hedge. On the N. and E. there is a scarp of about 8 ft. in height to the inner enclosure, but no remains of ramparts or ditches.