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© Mr John H. Sparkes

IoE Number: 374025
Photographer: Mr John H. Sparkes
Date Photographed: 04 April 2007
Date listed: 24 March 1950
Date of last amendment: 24 March 1950
Grade I

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BRIDGWATERST2937SEWEST QUAY736-1/10/208(West side)

BRIDGWATER ST2937SE WEST QUAY 736-1/10/208 (West side) 24/03/50 The Lions and attached pavilions, balustrades, gate piers and railings GV I House. 1720-30. By and for Benjamin Holloway. Flemish-bond brick of alternate red and yellow; stone coping, cornice, banded pilasters, architraves, cills, projecting central bay and rusticated basement; double-pitched pantile roof with yellow brick stacks to all gable ends; pyramidal slate roofs to the pavilions. Double-depth plan with forward pavilions and mid C19 side wings. Provincial Baroque style. 2 storeys with semi-basement; symmetrical 5-window range. Windows to the main block are 6/6-pane sashes in segmental-arched, pulvinated architraves with keystones which die into the cornice above. A wide flight of steps over a basement arch leads up to the central bay; the blocking course, replacing a former parapet wall, is raised above an open segmental pediment, dentilled corbels coincide with the cornice and form capitals to fluted pilasters; these frame a semicircular-arched sash window with a moulded archivolt, keystone and imposts; a recessed panelled apron rests on the cornice of the doorcase which spans the facade as a string-course. The raised-and-fielded 8-panel door is set in a pulvinated architrave with a crest to the keystone, all framed by Doric columns and a triglyph frieze with patera; the outer sides of the bay have banded rustication on both floors. The flanking windows to the first floor have moulded cills and plain shallow shaped aprons with guttae to the ends. The ground-floor windows have bracketed cills. The basement windows have flat gauged stone arches below a string course. The single-storey pavilions are set forward to the front of a paved courtyard at street level and linked to the pilasters by rusticated arches. They have hipped roofs, moulded and banded eaves cornices, pilasters, (that to far left missing) and Venetian windows to the fronts; the central arches of which, with large keystones dying into the bands, are blocked, the fixed casements with thick glazing bars to the sides have heavy cornices above and panels below; that to far right is a blind ashlar recess. C20 doors in moulded architraves face the courtyard. Rear: the C18 left (north) ballroom wing is 2 storeys with basement; 3-window range. Red Flemish-bond brick, it has a plain parapet, bracketed cills to eared architraves with raised cornices, 3/6-pane sash windows to the first floor and 6/9-panes to the ground floor, the lower sash and cill of the window to left have been removed to make a door. The 3-window range rear of the lower early C18 main block to right, of yellow Flemish-bond brick, has raised surrounds and keystones to 6/6-pane sash windows; the central range has been rebuilt (C20) in stretcher-bond brick with a large 6/6-pane sash window to the first floor and C20 double doors to the ground floor; flanked by C20 windows under segmental arches to the semi-basement. INTERIOR: C18 joinery including doors and shutters. A semicircular arch, now blocked, to rear of entrance hall has acanthus-leaf edging to the intrados and a plaster shell to centre, similar to those in No.12 Castle Street (qv). The room to left of ground-floor front has high raised-and-fielded panelling which sweeps up to approx 2m to meet the fireplace wall to left; a c1840 white marble fire-surround with block corners and an oval panel with radiating flutes to centre of lintel is set under 4 square panels below a dentilled cornice at ceiling level. Carved scrolls sweep down from the cornice to meet the panelling which has 2 shell alcoves to the corners. The wall to right of central entrance hall has been removed, that to the left has a dado rail which sweeps up to a 6-panel door, the tallest panels of which are at the top; raised-and-fielded panelling below dado rail. Room to right, consisting of the former hall, rear room and front room, has a mid C19 cornice, raised-and-fielded panelling to the shutters and panelled reveals to a door to rear right leading to the C18 and C19 ballroom. The large C18 ballroom has a very high ceiling, a modillion cornice with patera and a frieze of key pattern and swags. Traces of 2 high and wide semicircular arches to left can be seen, these were lowered to become segmental arches below a C19 picture rail. The 6/9-pane sash windows have C18 added moulding to the panelling of the shutters. The late C19 fireplace against the front wall is in Jacobean style with columns and panelling, to right-hand wall is a C19 segmental-arched recess. The ground-floor room of the C19 wing has a wooden fireplace to left with an eared architrave and C18-style moulding, a moulded and reeded cornice, high skirting boards and a segmental-arched recess to the rear. The closed-string staircase to rear of former hall has turned balusters, fretted ends and a moulded rail. The lodge to the right has stone skirtings, a corner stack and a late C19 Gothic-style fireplace with a cinquefoil-headed cast-iron grate. This was where the drivers waited. SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: C20 low panelled and corniced gatepiers carry spectacular Chinese-style dogs (The Lions) which are connected to the pavilions by low ashlar walls with C20 square-section stone balustrades. The steps to the door are flanked by C19 railings with scrolls attached to the vertical rails. History: The house was built for himself by Benjamin Holloway, a carpenter and builder who was employed by the Duke of Chandos to build and possibly design the houses in Castle Street. The house was illustrated in William Halfpenny's "Perspective Made Easy", 1731. (Buildings of England: Pevsner N: South and West Somerset: London: 1958-: 98; Colvin H: A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects 1660-1840: London: 1978-: 378; VCH: Somerset: London: 1992-: 201).

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