MSO10691 - Porlock Rectory, Parson Street, Porlock (Building)


A 16th Century building, enlarged and remodelled in the early 18th Century and extended in the mid 19th Century. The Rectory was used as a recuperation centre for Special Operations Executive personnel during the Second World War.

Please read the Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record .

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

Rectory and walled garden. C16, enlarged and remodelled early C18, extended mid C19. Red sandstone random rubble at one time rendered, quoins, steeply pitched hipped slate roof, moulded cornice, external stone stack right gable end, tall brick stacks rising from eaves left. Plan: original plan not clear, 3 cell with 2 cell addition. Two storeys with attic, 1:7 bays, left segmental headed tripartite sash windows in projecting C19 addition; main block, 3 dormers, 12-pane sash windows in moulded surrounds with lintels central flat roofed porch with two 12-pane windows, half glazed doors. Interior: entered into original hall with 9-panel compartment ceiling cut by insertion of early C18 dog leg stairs rising beside wall, turned balusters, cut string, panelled dado, rooms beyond left featureless, early-mid C18 panelling in room to right. Wall adjoining to west enclosing garden, red sandstone random rubble slate coping about 2 m high, arched doorway with rubble voussoirs. [1] English Heritage Listed Building Number: 265472. First Listed on 07/10/1981. [2] 3-cell plan. Stone, Random rubble walls. Hipped roof [3] South of the Parish Church is the former Rectory built of local red sandstone with steeply pitched slate roofs. The original plan dates from the 16th century and appears to be three-cell with a two-cell addition. It was considerably extended in the early 18th century and again in the mid 19th century. There are good interior features, and the listing also includes the wall enclosing the garden to the north. The segmental arched and tri-partite sash windows with narrow glazing bars, are mainly 19th century. [4] Most of the Rectory was built during the 18th Century but some parts may date to the 14th Century. For many years the Rectors held what was known as the Rectory Manor. Part of their living came from the rents of cottages and gardens on this land. It was mainly in Hawkcombe, including the Mill, up as far as 'Peep Out' Cottage, where the boundary turned up to Porlock Hill, thence down the road to a point near the Ship Inn, and then back to the Rectory. The first Porlock Rector was John, son of Rogo, appointed in 1297. From 1559 the living has been in the gift of the Crown.[5] 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. [6] The Rectory was used as a recuperation centre for Special Operations Executive personnel during the Second World War. REHABILITATION CENTRE. Recuperation House SRF, with photograph SOE. [8] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [9]

Sources/Archives (9)

  • <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: Fisher, J.. 2002. Porlock: Conservation Area Character Appraisal. p10, 11, 12, 14, 18.
  • <5> Monograph: Corner, Dennis. 1992. Porlock in Those Days. Exmoor Books. p19, 93.
  • <6> Report: Lawrence, G.. 2014. Exmoor National Park: Rapid condition survey of listed buildings 2012-13.
  • <7> Report: Pratt, N.. 2013. Porlock Conservation Area: Appraisal Document. Exmoor National Park Authority. 26, 76, Figure 23.
  • <8> Digital archive: Council for British Archaeology. 2002. Defence of Britain. DEB01. 88, Recorded by KW Astell.
  • <9> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1411370, Extant 15 February 2022.

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • 2012-3 Building At Risk Score (6): 1076/24/58/1
  • Coastal Risk 2014: Flood Zone 2 fluvial
  • Coastal Risk 2016: Flood Zone 2 fluvial
  • DoB Non Anti Invasion Database UID: 88
  • Local List Status (Rejected)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 84 NE147
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1411370
  • Somerset SMR PRN: 31185



Grid reference Centred SS 8864 4659 (18m by 26m)
Map sheet SS84NE

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Related Events/Activities (3)

Record last edited

Sep 27 2022 2:54PM


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