MSO7777 - Glenthorne House (Building)


A Neo-Tudor house built 1829-30 for the Reverend Walter Stevenson Halliday, who purchased Countisbury Parish between 1829 and 1866. The kitchens were enlarged in 1839 and a library added in 1846. The design was influenced by PF Robinson's Rural Architecture (1823).

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Type and Period (2)

Protected Status

Full Description

[SS 7987 4961] Glenthorne [NAT]. [1] Glenthorne was built for Revered W S Halliday in 1829-30 "in a wonderfully sheltered cove far below the Lynton-Porlock road and reached on a private road with serpentines as daring as in the Alps". The house is in a neo-Tudor style. [2] The setting of the house is topographically striking and its immediate landscape and grounds are complemented by a number of architectural features. These include an ice house (MSO7776); "The Towers" gatehouse (MDE21306), sundial (MDE21305), lodge (MDE21304), gate piers (MDE21303), "Sisters" fountain (MDE21302), game larder and courtyard walling, garden terrace walling (MDE21329), and coach house (MDE21328). [3] No further field investigation. [4] Glenthorne including adjoining game larder and courtyard wall. Built circa 1829-30, with the kitchens enlarged in 1839 and a library added in 1846 (information from datestone). Further alterations and additions were carried out in the mid 19th Century. The building is uncoursed stone with limestone ashlar dressing and gabled-ended slate roofs. The interior is largely complete with early 19 th century fixtures and fittings and has much used 17th Century joinery, including back staircase with turned balusters, moulded handrail and carving, a fireplace with 17th Century ovolo-moulded wooden lintel and a 17th Century fireplace. The Reverend Walter Stevenson Halliday acquired the Glenthorne estate in 1829 and began building the house soon afterwards. In the hills above the house there is an inscribed stone marking the location of the Revd. Halliday's decision to build Glenthorne, known locally as the 'decision stone'. It was not located at time of survey. He was much influenced in the design of the house, and the designs of other estate buildings, by the buildings illustrated in PF Robinson's "Rural Architecture; or a Series of Designs for Ornamental Cottages" published in 1823. [5] The building was not directly visited in April 2012 as part of the rapid condition survey of Exmoor's Listed Buildings 2012-13. The house received a BAR score of 6; other associated structures were not viewed or scored. [6] This structure was visible on the c. 1841 Countisbury Tithe map and the 1842 Oare Tithe map. [7,8] A history of the Halliday family at Glenthorne was written by Ursula Halliday. [9] The house is shown on 2018 MasterMap data. [10] An assessment of specific elements of the building in relation to a submitted planning application, with a general discussion of the property. The house is described as being built in 5 phases, begun in c.1830 for WS Halliday and completed in 1879. Very few changes are thought to have taken place to the property between this time and 1985, when it was purchased by Christopher Ondaatje from the Hallidays and was described as being in a "semi-ruinous state". It was updated at this time, but has not been altered since, and was sold to the present owners in 2019. [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 (12)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1980. 1:10000 Map, 1980. 1:10000.
  • <2> Monograph: Cherry, B. + Pevsner, N.. 1999. The Buildings of England: Devon. Penguin Books. 2nd Edition. 292.
  • <3> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 916269.
  • <4> Unpublished document: Wilson-North, R.. Various. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 21 April 1994.
  • <5> Index: Department of the Environment. List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest . HHR: Countisbury (24 November 1988) 15.
  • <6> Report: Lawrence, G.. 2014. Exmoor National Park: Rapid condition survey of listed buildings 2012-13.
  • <7> Map: <1841. Countisbury Tithe Map and Apportionment.
  • <8> Map: 1842. Oare Tithe Map and Apportionment.
  • <9> Monograph: Halliday, U.. 1995. Glenthorne: A most romantic place. Exmoor Books. 1st E Edition.
  • <10>XY Map: Ordnance Survey. 2018. MasterMap. [Mapped feature: #41238 ]
  • <11> Report: Martin, S.. 2021. Glenthorne: Heritage statement and impact assessment. Stuart Martin Architects.
  • <12> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 916269, Extant 6 December 2021.



Grid reference Centred SS 7986 4961 (48m by 29m)
Map sheet SS74NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (14)

Related Events/Activities (4)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • 2012-3 Building At Risk Score (6): 1549/4/18/1
  • 2012-3 Building At Risk Score (Not visited): 1549/4/18/2
  • 2012-3 Building At Risk Score (Not visited): 1549/4/18/3
  • Devon SMR (Devonshire): SS74NE/613
  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 41688
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE11260
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE21330
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 74 NE24
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NBR Index Number: 2K/00835
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 916269
  • Somerset SMR PRN (Somerset): 33868

Record last edited

Mar 29 2022 2:41PM


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