Lodge Farm, Rectory Road, Wyverstone Street, Suffolk
(TM 0331 6773)
An Archaeological Record
Lodge Farm lies in open, arable countryside approximately 1km west of Wyverstone parish church and on the southern edge of what appears to have been a small medieval green onto which the farmyard has encroached. The farmhouse is a mid-16th century structure of ‘Yeoman’ status with a fine moulded ceiling and queen-post roof. The southern half of the adjacent farm complex includes a contemporary four-bay timber-framed barn which has been much altered and is accordingly unlisted but contains evidence of an original floored stable and is of considerable historic interest. The eastern range of the yard in front of the barn is formed by an exceptionally rare timberframed structure of the late-15th or early-16th century that is not shown on the parish tithe map of 1838 and may have been moved from behind the farmhouse to form a cow-shed in the mid-19th century. This building is listed at grade II as a former stable, but at 27 feet in length by 13 feet in width probably represents the smallest known Tudor ‘public building’ in the country. In all but scale it closely resembles buildings elsewhere in the region which are known to have been designed as manorial or market court halls and gildhalls, and there is evidence that it had already been moved from its primary site before the 19th century. The structure has lost its queen-post roof and original ceiling, but retains evidence of seven ‘diamond’ mullioned windows, two external arched doors opening into its two ground-floor rooms, and a third external door which led directly to an undivided upper storey spanned by two decorative open trusses. The present conversion plans include the removal of these original doorways.
The northern half of the farm complex is a mid-19th century ‘model’ development of white brick which includes a good and largely unaltered single-storied stable range. This range preserves a boarded manger and hay rack together with a tack room, loose box and an unusual, completely enclosed chaff box. Two shelter sheds, one of which retains its manger, also survive, together with a contemporary walled yard which is now covered by a 20th century roof. An adjacent 19th century vehicle shed and stable incorporate a 16th century timber-framed wall which follows the same alignment as the farmhouse and probably indicates the boundary of the medieval green.
Historic Context: Documentary Record
Lodge Farm lies in open, arable countryside in the hamlet of Wyverstone Street, approximately 1km west of the village centre and the church of St George. The site abuts Rectory Road to the north, but formerly adjoined what appears to have been a triangular medieval green as indicated by the parish tithe map of 1838 (figure 19). The grade II listed timber-framed and rendered farmhouse is a mid-16th century building of ‘Yeoman’ status that is typical of the region, with a fine roll-moulded ceiling in its hall, a plank-and-muntin cross- passage screen and a queen-post roof structure; there is no 15th framing, contrary to the description in the Schedule of Listed Buildings (which misinterprets a crenellated mid-rail at the service end of the hall). The parlour at its eastern end is an enlargement of the late-16th or early-17th century.
The property was a substantial tenanted farm of 201 acres at the time of the tithe survey, owned by Andrew Caldicott Esquire and occupied by Edward Eaton, with approximately 40 acres of pasture and 160 of arable. These proportions are consistent with the status of the farmhouse and may have changed little since the 16th century. The list description refers to a three-armed moat to the west of the house and notes that it was formerly known as Manor Lodge, but the moat is not shown on the tithe map and the present name appears on the first edition Ordnance Survey of 1880. Copinger’s ‘Manors of Suffolk’ (1909) identified only one manor in Wyverstone, which presumably lay in the standard position adjacent to the church where the Ordnance Survey indicates a moat and ‘Hall Barn on the Site of Wyverstone Hall’; there is no reason to associate Lodge Farm with manorial status, and the nearby house known as ‘The Manor’ was in fact built as the parish rectory in circa 1830.
The tithe map shows the recognisable present outline of the farmhouse with its rear service lean-to in pink to the west of the site, and the central pond also remains largely unaltered. The 16th century barn (2) is shown in the south-eastern corner of the yard, with southward projections much as today, but the 16th century listed ‘stable’ (building 1) is conspicuous by its absence. Note the outbuilding to the south of the farmhouse, which may represent the ‘stable’ before it was moved to its present position. The 16th century northern wall of the S- shaped structure immediately west of the pond appears to survive today as the partition between the Cart Shed and Cart Stable (14 & 15). Area 137 is labelled ‘Homestead’ on the tithe apportionment, which does not provide individual field names.
The farmyard, like many others in Suffolk, was transformed in the mid-19th century. Only the farmhouse, pond and barn (2) remained constant between 1838 and 1880. A complex of buildings was built to the south of the barn’s existing lean-to structures (3 and 4), but these had been demolished prior to the aerial photograph of 1966 (photo A2.16). Mr Brian Spofforth, who acquired the farm in 1963, reports that they had contained pigs in the 1950s. Building 1 is shown in its present position north-east of the barn, and the building of similar proportions shown behind the farmhouse in 1838 has disappeared. (The present shed on its approximate site was built in the mid-20th century to house the large ‘tip-up’ wagon of the then owner, who operated as a cattle slaughterman and used it to transport carcasses.) The complex of sheds, shelters and yards now known for planning purposes as ‘North Barn’ (6-16) are shown in their present form, although a separate group of buildings to the east has been demolished. The individual components of this complex are analysed below, but consist chiefly of white brick and appear to date from the 1850s or 1860s when many local farms were forced to diversify from arable to mixed dairy production.
The Ordnance Survey of 1902 uses broken lines to indicate opensided buildings, and clearly shows areas 11 and 12 in their original form as open-sided shelters serving a pair of enclosed animal yards. Similar shelters are shown in the paddock to the east (now demolished). The roof of the shed in the north-eastern corner of the surviving complex continued along the northern edge of the yard to form another shelter, but this was removed when the present roof was built over the entire northern yard in the mid-20th century. The demolished building south of the barn (2) is also open-sided to the west. If the northern yard was designed for horses, as suggested by its extant fittings, the remaining yards would have housed cattle. The situation was unchanged in 1928, as shown overleaf.
1. Building 1. Listed 16th Century 3-bay timber-framed structure of uncertain original purpose, moved to its present site in mid-19th century. Possibly a stable, but probably a public building such as a manorial court hall.
2. Barn. Mid- to Late-16th century timber-framed five-bay structure with northern entrance. Narrow western bay originally floored and probably used as a stable.
3. Timber lean-to against eastern gable of barn (2). Wide half-hung doors suggest it was used as cattle stalls.
4. Brick 19th century lean-to against southern wall of barn (2) with external access.
5. Brick 19th century lean-to against southern wall of barn (2) with internal access.
6. Stable. Brick, mid-19th century, with hay rack and manger.
7. Chaff Box. Brick and timber, mid-19th century (i.e. and enclosed feed store with window-like apertures but entirely lacking a door).
8. Tack Room (harness room). Brick, mid-19th century, with harness hooks and access to chaff box.
9. Loose box. Brick, mid-19th century, with access to chaff box.
10. Enclosed horse yard, latterly used for cattle. Mid-19th century.
11. Open-sided shelter. Brick, mid-19th century, with boarded manger
12. Open-sided shelter, now partly enclosed. Brick, mid-19th century.
13. Enclosed cattle yard, originally open but with mid-20th century corrugated iron roof.
14. Cart or trap shed. Brick, mid-19th century.
15. Cart or trap stable. Brick, mid-19th century, but with 16th century timber- framed north wall retained from earlier structure. Retaining a hay rack.
16. Loose box. Brick, mid-19th century.
Figure 5. Block Plan of Site (showing the surviving historic components)
1. Building 1
(grade II listed as an early-16th century stable)
Building 1, in figure 5, is a remarkable timber-framed structure of great historic interest, not least because it has no known direct parallel elsewhere. Very few small, non-domestic buildings have survived from the 16th century, and a lack of context renders precise interpretation of this example problematic.
The building is aligned on a north-south axis at right angles to the nearby barn (2) and 5.5 feet distant from its north-eastern corner. It extends to just 27 feet in length by 13 feet in overall width (8.2 metres by 3.9), but is complete in itself with evidence of ‘diamond’ mullioned windows in all four elevations. Its walls now rise to approximately 10 feet (3 metres) at their eaves but no original ground sills remain and the relatively low level of the mid-rails and door heads suggests they were initially up to 2 feet higher. Each wall contains studs of approximately 7 ins by 4 (18 cm by 10) interrupted by a mid-rail and arranged in three equal bays with 8 feet (2.4 metres) between the jowled storey posts. There is a high proportion of elm, although some timbers are of oak. The present roof structure is a 19th century low- pitched replacement covered with pantiles but both gables, which have been reduced in height, preserve brace mortises for an original queen-post structure. The two open trusses are otherwise intact, with tenoned arch-braces and steeply cambered and chamfered tie-beams which contain queen-post mortises in their upper edges and one sawn-off queen-post base. Although now open to its roof in the manner of a barn, the building was designed with a ceiling throughout, as indicated by pegged binding joist mortises in the storey posts. There is also evidence of a secondary ceiling at a higher level, as discussed below. The framing is difficult to date closely in the absence of decorative features, particularly as queen-post roof structures are found locally throughout the 16th century, but the likely profiles of the missing door arches suggest a date in the final quarter of the 15th century or the first quarter of the 16th century. Carpenters’ marks in the form of Roman numerals are visible on many timbers; most are shallow and incised in the medieval and Tudor style, but some, particularly on the principal posts and arch-braces, are deeply chiselled in a form normally found only during the 17th century and later. (Medieval carpenters worked with easily marked green timber, while later buildings consisted largely of re-used, seasoned material, and the method of incision changed accordingly). The presence of two separate series of numerals strongly suggests the frame has been dismantled and re-erected, and this is borne out by the building’s absence from the parish tithe map of 1838. It was evidently moved to its present position between 1838 and its appearance on the Ordnance Survey in 1880.
The individual timbers contain the usual notches and grooves for wattle-and-daub infill, and this would have extended across the external walls as the outer surfaces of many studs and posts are waney (i.e. their best faces were displayed internally as they were unseen externally). The presence of external daub is confirmed by the presence of elm, which cannot endure exposure to the elements, and by the internal braces which rise to the tie-beams from each corner post (with the exception of the gable brace in the south-western corner which descended to the mid-rail in order to avoid a window). The walls are currently clad with a variety of materials, consisting chiefly of tarred weatherboarding to the lower storey and clay daub to the upper. The present daub is not original as it avoids the aforementioned notches and is thinly applied to vertical poles attached to horizontal external laths. Much of the internal daub finish has been renewed or lost, but the older panels are of historic interest as they preserve a series of incised circles varying between 9 and 16 inches in diameter (23 to 40 cm) as shown in the accompanying elevations (figures 7 & 8). These features are worn, but also include eye-shaped devices formed by intersecting arcs and at least one series of six ‘petals’. A number of impressed triangles form a border at the top edge of the upper panel which lies north of post E. These devices are well-known apotropaic symbols used between the 17th and 19th centuries to protect animals and crops from unseen harm, and are often found in buildings that may have been converted from other purposes. In this instance they can be dated to the period between 1838 and 1880.
Original Layout: First Floor
The original layout of the building is shown in figure 6. The upper storey was undivided and well lit by four windows containing diamond mullions, as indicated by the latter’s empty mortises. The gables contained large windows each with four mullions, while the front and rear elevations contained smaller examples with two mullions in their central bays. The smaller first-floor windows are associated with neatly cut shutter grooves, obeyed by the adjacent chamfers, while the other windows in the building are flanked by shallow rebates that would have been provided with nailed cover-boards to form the necessary grooves. This difference probably relates only to the greater thickness of the roof-plates when compared with the midrails and tie-beams, which permitted a complete groove to be cut. The upper storey would have been open to its original queenpost roof structure, with ample headroom of almost 6 feet (1.8 metres) in the centres of its steeply cambered tie-beams. This floor was reached by an external stair at the southern end of the eastern elevation, as shown in figure 6. The position of this stair is indicated by a fully-framed doorway and a pegged mortise for a stair trimmer in the mid-rail (figure 7). The mid-rail is deeply chamfered above this doorway in order to avoid injuring those climbing the stair, and both rail and northern jamb contain external door rebates (the door of necessity opened outwards to avoid the stair). The asymmetrical position of the first-floor window in the southern gable also relates to the stair, which would have obstructed access to the shutter of a central window.
Original Layout: Ground Floor
The ground floor was divided into two unequal chambers by a framed partition between posts E and F. The southern chamber of two bays extended to 17 feet in length by 12.5 feet in internal width (5.2 metres by 3.8) and the northern to 8.5 feet in length by 12.5 in width (2.6 metres by 3.8). The presence of the dividing partition is indicated by the small size of the binding joist mortise in the adjacent posts and by notches for wattle-and-daub beneath; the binding joist between posts D and C was some four inches thicker at approximately 10 inches square and its upper surface was level with those of the common ceiling joists tenoned into it – the same joists were simply lodged on the partition rail. The larger space was lit by opposing narrow windows in the central bay, each containing two diamond mullions, and entered by an external door beside the stair door in the eastern elevation. This door contained an arched head, the pegged mortises of which still survive in the original jambs (each of which is 12 inches (30 cm) in height and double pegged, suggesting a relatively steep arch when compared with the more shallow arched heads of the mid and late-16th century). The smaller chamber was entered by an identical arched door which abutted post E (the southern narrow jamb of which is lacking, like that of the stair door), and lit by at least one adjacent window containing two diamond mullions. The rear, western wall of this chamber has been entirely rebuilt and it is now impossible to determine whether a second window or door existed here. With the exception of two fragments, the studs of both gables have been replaced, but their mid-rails survive and contain no evidence of windows to mirror those immediately above.
The front elevation of the building, which now faces east, contained no fewer than three doors in its short length, of which two contained decorative arches; the stair doorway lacked any such arch as its rectangular door opened outwards and would have obscured it (and an arch would have reduced headroom on climbing the stair). The description of this structure in the Schedule of Listed Buildings refers to ‘three entrances all with 4-centred arched heads’ and a cross-entry in the northern bay; in fact, however, only two of the three doors possessed arches (probably but not necessarily of four centres) and the rebuilding of the northern bay’s rear wall renders the identification of any cross-entry impossible at present. It may be feasible during future conversion works to remove a length of timber which now obscures the northern side of post F in order to determine whether infill notches are present – their absence would suggest a door as opposed to a solid wall. A cross-entry is, however, unlikely given the narrow proportions of the room. The list description also refers to 3, 4 and 5-light diamond mullioned windows, but there is no evidence of a four-light example. It should be noted that current plans for the forthcoming conversion (Keith Day Architects, August 2007) identify the most important timbers of the frame, i.e. the various original door jambs, as secondary features and propose to remove them.
Original Function & Historic Significance: Stable or Public Building?
Building 1 is undoubtedly a remarkably rare survival, but its original purpose is not entirely clear. The list description identifies it as ‘stabling with loft accommodation’, suggesting the inspector was also reluctant to commit himself. Any firm identification is hampered by a lack of contemporary parallels and, more importantly, by lack of site context: the building has evidently been moved from elsewhere, probably on more than one occasion, and there is no means of determining where it began its life. It seems likely that it lay immediately behind the farmhouse until its removal to the present site in the mid-19th century (as suggested by the coincidence of a building of similar proportions disappearing from the former and appearing in the latter between 1838 and 1880), but there is evidence this was not its first journey. The building was apparently dismantled to insert a secondary ceiling, higher than the first, which was itself removed prior to the application of the present wattle-and-daub – and therefore prior to its arrival in its present location. Timberframed buildings were often dismantled and moved in the late16th and 17th centuries, particularly if their original raison d’etre had vanished. Guildhalls, court halls and other ‘public’ buildings fell into this category, and frequently made their way into farmyards where they were readily converted into barns and stables.
If the building was indeed designed as a free-standing stable, which is by no means impossible, it is probably the best example of its type in Britain. Stables which pre-date the 18th century are notoriously rare, and only a handful of Tudor examples are known from high- status sites (normally in brick and designed for the numerous animals of gentry households). There are however, a number of problems with such an interpretation, not least of which is the existence of a perfectly ample stable in the western bay of the barn. Early stables were usually provided with at least one long, blank wall against which a number of horses could be tethered facing their hay rack and manger: the width of the barn would, for example, have offered ample space to accommodate a series of horses facing the gable. Given the presence of either doors or windows in the longer front and rear elevations of building 1, in contrast, the only available space for animals was against the narrow gables or internal partitions. The orientation of the building therefore seems inappropriate for the purpose; it would have been more sensible to place windows in the two ground-floor gables and arrange the animals along the rear wall. The presence of large and small rooms, each with a separate external entrance, is also unusual in this respect, although stables often contain inner anterooms for harness and tack. The heights of the structure are also inappropriate for stabling, offering no more than 6 feet of headroom on the lower storey even where the studs are extended as shown in the reconstruction drawings; if the upper floor operated as a hay loft, as would certainly be expected in an early stable, why was it provided with so much unnecessary height at the expense of the ground floor? It is very difficult, in addition, to imagine even a standard 16th century horse, shorter but stockier than its modern counterpart, squeezing through the two arched doors of barely 2.5 feet in width (75 cm). Whatever happened on the ground floor, the upper storey was undoubtedly a fine and imposing space, with finely chamfered and finished trusses of a kind normally associated only with domestic and public display. It bears little resemblance to the low, utilitarian spaces found even above far larger and more expensive contemporary stables.
It is far more likely, in my view, that building 1 was designed not as a stable but as a public building. Its internal layout, proportions and quality are all consistent with such an interpretation, and in all but one respect there are many direct parallels elsewhere. Most parishes in Suffolk possessed at least one such building and often several, serving as gildhalls, market halls, church houses and manorial court halls – many of which eventually found their way into farmyards where they were readily converted into barns by simply removing their ceilings. Such buildings were not heated and typically contained fine undivided halls on their upper floors reached by external stairs and two or more ground-floor chambers, also with separate external access, that served as stores or ‘committee rooms’. The only respect in which building 1 differs from this norm is its diminutive size. Most extend to 30 or more feet in length and 16 or more feet in width, but figures 17 and 18 illustrate a strikingly similar building in Mount Bures, Essex, that is just 28 feet long and differs only in that its stair entrance lies between its two ground-floor doors; this building is believed to have served the small manor as a court house, and is larger than building 1 only insofar at it increases the width of its hall with a jetty. Smaller examples were probably once commonplace but were less saleable when their original purpose in a market place, church yard or manor house yard disappeared, and were destroyed rather than moved for conversion. Could building 1 have started life in or near the empty moat that marks the site of Wyverstone Hall? Or perhaps on the site of the long defunct village market, for which a charter was granted in 1231? Whether it represents the smallest freestanding stable to survive from late-medieval England or, as is far more probable, the smallest public building, it is of national importance.
The evidence of extensive dismantling and reconstruction in the timber frame increases the likelihood that it was designed as something other than a normal stable. As discussed above, the timbers display two sequences of carpenters’ marks that confirm the building was moved to its present site from elsewhere. The appearance of the chiselled secondary marks is more consistent with the 17th century than the 19th century, and may well relate to an episode prior to the building’s arrival here after 1838. The storey posts of the two internal trusses (C-D and E-F) both contain large, well cut mortises for the binding joists of a secondary ceiling 18 inches (46 cm) above the first (which rested on the original corbel blocks of the four posts); all but one of these secondary mortises is pegged and the tenons of their respective binding joists could not have been inserted without dismantling the frame. It therefore seems likely that the structure was dismantled, moved from its unknown primary site and reerected behind Lodge farmhouse with a higher ceiling that would have been more appropriate to a stable. This may have occurred in the 17th century and coincided with the removal of the barn stable to increase space for cereal storage. The building was again moved in the mid-19th century, when or shortly before the northern yard complex was laid out. The present plaster may be presumed to date from this second process, but was finished internally after the removal of the secondary ceiling (as it would have been impossible to create a smooth finish from mid- rail to roof-plate had the intermediate ceiling been present). The building was therefore re- erected on its present site as a barnlike open shed without a ceiling. The present floor of red brick set on edge contains a well-defined axial drain close to the western yard, which indicates that animals were stalled facing the eastern wall. The presence of animals also explains the use of more durable boarding beneath the mid-rail, with vulnerable render confined to the area above. No original fittings survive, but large, square notches in the storey posts suggest the sometime presence of stall divisions. If the northern yard was designed primarily for horses, as indicated by its fittings, the southern yard and the building in its present form were presumably designed as cattle accommodation (which purpose it is understood to have served in the mid-20th century). The present door at the southern end of the western elevation allowed access from the yard (13), while the opposite door enabled animals to be taken out to pasture. The interior was lit by two small apertures in the eastern wall. Building 1 therefore seems to have descended the social scale during the course of its existence from public building to stable to cow house.
Structure and Date
The unlisted barn at Lodge Farm is an impressive timber-framed and weather-boarded structure of five bays that extends to 64.5 feet in length by 22 feet in overall width (19.6 metres by 6.7) and rises to 11 feet (3.3 metres) at the eaves. Its layout and internal rear (southern) elevation is shown in figure 11. The walls were largely rebuilt in at least two phases during the 18th and 19th centuries, making use of machine sawn softwood with primary bracing and red brick, and its roof-plates and rafters (now covered with corrugated iron) were entirely renewed in the 20th century. Despite the extent of these alterations, which explain its unlisted status, the barn retains a great deal of historic interest. The open trusses (i.e. the jowled storey posts, tie-beams and arch-braces) remain intact as shown in photo A2.9 and there is no reason to suppose they are not in situ despite the absence of any original fabric between them. The arch braces are rare survivals as most were removed to accommodate grain bins and farm vehicles in the 19th and 20th centuries. There is no evidence of queen or crown-post mortises in the upper surfaces of the cambered tie- beams, and the original roof structure was presumably of side- purlin type which suggests a date in the mid or late-16th century.
The eastern gable of the barn retains its original studs and braces as shown in figure 12, although its tie-beam is a pine replacement. These timbers are of unusually large scantling, with each stud averaging 8 ins in width by 4.5 in depth (20 cm by 11) compared with the standard 6 ins by 4, and the internally trenched brace is 2.25 ins (5.7 cm) thick. This size was necessary as the timbers are elm rather than oak and were more vulnerable to rot, which probably explains the need to replace so much of the wall fabric. The studs contain notches and grooves for wattle- and-daub infill but none remains, and their waney external surfaces demonstrate that the frame was designed to be rendered externally rather than exposed to view. The present tarred weatherboarding is an addition of the 19th century. The western gable was rebuilt in brick during the 19th century, and incorporates a high pitching door to match the insertion in its eastern counterpart. The western tie-beam survived this reconstruction, however, and contains mortises for arch-braces rising from its corner posts like those elsewhere in the barn; the braces of the eastern gable are unusual in radiating from a central post in a style more commonly found in medieval structures, and were presumably intended for decorative impact.
Original Layout: Entrances
The barn’s five bays are of unequal length as shown in figure
11. The two easternmost bays are each of 13 feet, but the central bay which contains the present entrance extends to only 11 feet. Threshing bays were typically narrow in this manner, and the absence of infill notches from the flanking storey posts in the north wall confirms that the entrance occupies its original position. The opposing posts in the south wall do contain infill notches, however, and indicate that the original rear door was of small proportions, as suggested in figure 11, and that the present wide aperture is an insertion. Early barns typically contained small rear doors in this manner; sufficient to create a draught for threshing purposes but not a vehicle thoroughfare. There is evidence of a further entrance at the eastern end of the northern elevation, where the mortise of a door lintel survives in the corner post (immediately beneath a wall brace mortise, as shown to the left in figure 11); this door may have allowed access to the barn when the large doors were closed, but its location is not convenient to the farmhouse and it probably provided a link to a demolished structure forming the eastern range of a contemporary courtyard.
Floored Stable in Western Bay
At 15 feet in length the bay which adjoins the midstrey on the west is slightly larger than its eastern counterparts, but the end bay is far shorter at just 8 feet. This westernmost bay also differs from the rest of the barn in that its front and rear walls contained mid-rails which interrupted the studs; the framing of its rear wall still survives, together with several studs in the penultimate bay as shown in figure 11, and the front storey post contains an empty mortise for an identical arrangement. These mid-rails were designed to support the joists of a ceiling (attached to a missing axial joist), and the bay was divided from the rest of the barn by a framed internal partition which is now indicated only by a series of empty stud mortises in the tie-beam. Floored end-bays of this kind are common in Suffolk barns (but rare elsewhere), and are usually interpreted as stables. There is no remaining evidence of an entrance in this instance, but the internal space of 8 feet by 21 (2.4 metres by 6.4) could have accommodated as many as 10 animals stalled across the width of the structure with a hay loft above. It has been suggested by Wade-Martins and others that a horse was necessary for every 20-30 acres of an arable farm, so this stable would have met the needs of the 7 to 10 animals required here (even assuming the 201 acres of 1838 had not increased since the 16th century).
Despite the replacement or removal of most external studwork, the barn retains a great deal of historic interest given its proximity to a contemporary listed farmhouse and the evidence of a floored stable at its western end. Those elements of the fabric which are most vital to its historic structural integrity, i.e. its storey posts and open trusses, have escaped alteration, and the building therefore remains worthy of listing at grade II.
3 – 5. Lean-to Structures Adjoining Barn
Three red brick 19th century lean-to structures with 20th century low-pitched corrugated iron roofs adjoin the southern wall and eastern gable of the barn (2). The gable lean-to (3) is divided into two compartments entered from the east by unusually wide half- hung doors and appears to have contained loose boxes for cattle grazing in the adjacent paddock (now occupied by a modern house). Additional doors link this structure to the adjoining southern lean-to (4), the covered yard to the north (13) and the site of a demolished range of buildings which formerly adjoined it to the south. This missing range contained a yard with an open sided shelter shed that abutted lean-to 4, which may have served as a cattle shed. The lean-to behind the barn midstrey (5) initially contained a wide doorway, now blocked by boarding, and may represent a mutilated porch. These various structures are not of particular historic significance in themselves.
6-13, 16. Northern Yard Complex
The northern range of farm buildings consists largely of white brick and was built between the tithe survey of 1838 and the First Edition Ordnance Survey of 1880. A date in the 1850s or 1860s seems likely on stylistic grounds, and the complex is typical of the major investment in animal accommodation seen across the region at this period. The eastern side of the walled yard (10) is formed by an impressive and well-preserved building that extends to 58 feet in length by 14 feet in overall width (17.5 metres by 4.3) and is divided into five compartments as shown in figure 5. Area 6 is entered from the yard by a central doorway and lit by two flanking windows, and preserves a long boarded manger and hayrack against its opposite eastern wall (which lacks doors and windows). The height of both the manger and hay rack (the latter is 5.75 feet (1.75 metres) above the floor) suggest this building was designed as a stable rather than a cow shed, despite the absence of a hay loft and reports that the yard was most recently used for cattle awaiting slaughter (in the 1950s). This interpretation is confirmed by the presence of several harness hooks in the adjacent tack room (8) which is formed by deal boarding and lit by a window in its western wall. A box-like compartment (7) alongside the tack room has no access door, and can be reached only by a window-like aperture in the partition which divides it from the tack room. This compartment also possesses shuttered ‘windows’ to the exterior and adjacent loose box (9), and is presumably a feed store. Spaces of this kind are sometimes described as chaff boxes, by which term it was known by its previous owner, but few have survived later alteration. The enclosed shed at the southern end of the building (9) is entered from the formerly open-sided shelter (12) which faced south to the yard in front of the barn (13), and was presumably a loose box for calves or fat stock. It contains no original fittings, but is lit by a shuttered window to the east and communicates by a similar shuttered opening with the chaff box. This building is an unusually complete example of a mid-19th century ‘model’ stable, which improved ventilation by omitting the hay loft found in most earlier examples.
The yard to the west of the stable is enclosed by a white brick wall and was provided with a corrugated iron roof in the 20th century when the yard was used for cattle. It initially possessed an open-sided shelter alongside the road to the north (shown on the Ordnance Surveys), formed by continuing the roof the eastern loose box (16) along its perimeter, but this was demolished when the roof was added. A small sub-enclosure lay in its north- western corner. A pair of back-to-back open-sided contemporary shelters still survives to the south however, although the south- facing example (12) was largely enclosed by boarding to form a shed when the adjacent yard (13) was partly roofed in the mid-20th century. The northern shelter (11) retains a boarded manger, and the two are connected by a doorway against the stable. The southern yard was enclosed by a brick wall but, like its northern counterpart, could be entered from both east and west to allow animals to circulate from the eastern paddock (access to the east was available via opposing doors in building 1). This paddock contained an additional range of open-sided shelters and sheds of which no trace remains (as shown on the Ordnance Surveys), although an enclosed shed which probably served as a loose box still survives in its north-western corner. Despite the alterations at the northern end of the yard, these various structures reveal the well-built, inter-connected nature of the yards and buildings that characterised High Farming in mid-19th century Suffolk.
14 & 15. Cart Shed and Stable
The red brick building that divides the northern and southern yards contains a pair of sheds at its western end that are entered from the farm track. The smaller, northern shed (14) possesses double doors and operated as a vehicle store (probably for the owner’s trap or cart) while its southern counterpart (15) preserves a narrow hay rack and was evidently intended for the driving horse or horses. Separate housing was often provided for road animals in this way. It is notable that the hay rack is positioned at the same height as that of the stable (6), i.e. 5.75 feet above the ground (1.75 metres). The dividing wall between the shed and stable is of particular interest as it consists of a section of 16th century timber-framing with a jowled post and internal brace (on the side of the stable). The present infill between the studs consists of 19th century brick, but this wall presumably represents the only remaining fragment of a fourth Tudor building on the site (in addition to the farmhouse, barn and ‘building 1’). Aligned east-west in the same plane as the house it was a low, single-storied structure of unknown function, but the fragment at least serves to demonstrate the presence of a northern range forming a yard in front of the barn (the eastern door of the latter suggests the presence of an eastern range). The northern wall of this building probably marked the edge of the green, with the pond serving the common need (along with others, as shown on the tithe map) prior to its ‘enclosure’ by the owner of Lodge Farm.