MSO10683 - Higher Doverhay Farmhouse, Doverhay, Porlock (Building)


A 16th Century possible open hall house contains some early interior features, such as a plank and muntin screen and an oak bench, together with a stair turret and chamfered beams. It has suggested the building may have been a longhouse.

Please read the Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record .

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

Farmhouse. C16, partly rebuilt and reroofed mid C19. Red sandstone and blue lias random rubble, triple ridge tile roof, large lateral stack to left of entrance, stone stack right gable end. Plan: 3-cell and cross passage, west extension. Two storeys, 1:3 bays, 3-light mullioned window rising through eaves left of stack, to right 3-light leaded iron casement set below eaves, two C19 2-light casements beyond, ground floor left 3-light ovolo moulded mullioned window, two windows to right of chamfered 4-centred dorway, stable-type door, similar door at rear of cross passage. Interior only partially viewed, plank and muntin screen and wooden pane to left of cross passage, inserted square headed doorway. Said to contain part of C17 scratch moulded bench in hall against inner room wall. Outer room divided, masonry cross passage wall with heavy peaked door frame to smaller room containing stair turret, probably a later insertion; chamfered beams with step and runout stops. (VAG Report, unpublished SRO, November 1984). [1] English Heritage Listed Building Number: 265463. First Listed on 22/05/1969. [2] 4-cell plan. Stone, Random rubble walls. Gabled roof [3] The building was subject to survey in November 1984. It is rubble built, with the currently tiled roof originally having been thatched. The front doorframe has a four centred head and there is a lateral chimney stack on the front elevation, with a small window on the door side. The house was of three room plan with cross passage, with the house aligned with the slope and the highest room at the eastern end. This is the house's inner room but it appears to have been largely rebuilt. The central hall has the front chimney fireplace that appears to have once contained an oven. A bench has an oak seat back that is scratch moulded and decorated, with a series of drilled depressions and shallow cuts below forming a zig zag pattern (the seat had been replaced). It was suggested the bench was of 17th Century date. Within the cross passage, the partition with the hall can be seen to be constructed in wide studs and panels set into a chamfered head beam. The third room had been partitioned but features two half and one full beam, with chamfers and step and runout stops. A fireplace has a brick lined oven adjacent and there is also a stair turret from this room, although this appears to have been an addition. The roof structure had been replaced. An agricultural building adjoins at the western end, on a slightly differing alignment, but evidence suggests it may have had a doorway directly into the third room of the property. It was suggested that part of the third room may have formed part of a cowhouse with this barn. [4] A further survey of the property was undertaken in 1989, which again recorded the features mentioned in [4]. It was thought that the front doorway and the wall thicknesses implied a late 15th Century origin, with the inner room thought to be an addition or a rebuild. Windows and a door within the property suggested 17th and 18th Century alterations. [5] In Doverhay, Lower Doverhay and Higher Doverhay and their outbuildings, are stone built with Bridgwater tile roofs (probably replacing thatch)... The latter, owned by the National Trust, is grade II listed, and probably has 16th century origins, and contains some early interior features including a plank and muntin screen. [6] The building was visited in April 2012 as part of the rapid condition survey of Exmoor's Listed Buildings 2012-13. It received a BAR score of 6. [7] Higher Doverhay probably dates to the 16th or 17th Century and is a 3 bay cross passage farmhouse with lateral stack, rubblestone and Roman tile roof. It retains many of its original features. There are three associated farm buildings, including the barn attached to the east of the farmhouse. [8] Part of this structure appears to be present on the 1841 Luccombe Tithe map. [9] Late 15th century farmhouse with 17th century alterations. [11] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [12]

Sources/Archives (11)

  • <1> Index: 2/1/1986. Thirty-fifth List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest, District of West Somerset (Somerset)/Exmoor National Park.
  • <2> Unassigned: Webster CJ, Historic Environment Record. 2005. Staff Comments, Somerset County Council.
  • <3> Unpublished document: Somerset County Council. Various. Somerset HER parish files - Exmoor records.
  • <4> Report: Gilson, R.G.. 1984. West Somerset District. Porlock. Doverhay Farm..
  • <6> Report: Fisher, J.. 2002. Porlock: Conservation Area Character Appraisal. p22.
  • <7> Report: Lawrence, G.. 2014. Exmoor National Park: Rapid condition survey of listed buildings 2012-13.
  • <8> Report: Pratt, N.. 2013. Porlock Conservation Area: Appraisal Document. 41, 42, 76, Figure 46.
  • <9> Map: Collard Cox, W.. 1841. Luccombe Tithe Map and Apportionment.
  • <10> Report: Williams, E.H.D.. 1989. Porlock. Doverhay. Upper Doverhay Farm.. N/A.
  • <11> Archive: Unknown. Unknown. Volume: Upper Doverhay Farm, Porlock.
  • <12> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 538776, Extant 7 February 2022.

External Links (0)

Other Statuses/References

  • 2012-3 Building At Risk Score (6): 1076/24/50
  • Coastal Risk 2014: Flood Zone 2 fluvial
  • Coastal Risk 2014: Flood Zone 3 fluvial
  • Coastal Risk 2016: Flood Zone 2 fluvial
  • Coastal Risk 2016: Flood Zone 3 fluvial
  • Defence of Britain Database UID: S0012700
  • Local List Status (Rejected)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 84 NE97
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NBR Index Number: 78537
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 538776
  • Somerset SMR PRN: 31176



Grid reference Centred SS 8887 4650 (28m by 18m)
Map sheet SS84NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (5)

Record last edited

Sep 27 2022 3:08PM


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