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© Mr F. Bryan Basketter LRPS

IoE Number: 400052
Photographer: Mr F. Bryan Basketter LRPS
Date Photographed: 30 August 2000
Date listed: 29 July 1966
Date of last amendment: 29 July 1966
Grade I

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WORSLEY WARDLEY HALL DRIVE SD 70 SE 2/61 Wardley Hall 29/7/66 G.V. I House. c.1500 but with considerable rebuilding in C19 and C20. Timber-framed with graduated stone slate roof but with rebuilding in brick with stone dressings. Quadrangular 2- storey plan including gatehouse and an open hall which was floored over in 1551. The south elevation consists of 5 bays including gabled west and east ranges which project to either side and a 2-storey bay window to the former hall which is gabled and projects still further. All are of brick with mullion and mullion and transom windows of 1895 or 1903. The central section is of timber framing on a stone plinth. Tudor-arched cross-passage door with mullioned overlight. 3-light double-transomed hall window to left, 4- light window to right and restored 3, 2 and 3-light windows to first floor. All have ovolo-moulded timber mullions many of which are replacements or restorations. The massive hall chimney stack projects to left, it is of narrow bricks and may even date from when the hall was floored over. Much of the west and east elevations date from the 1895 restoration for which the architect was Douglas and Fordham. The north- west corner was extended at that date. Projecting stone stack on west. The gatehouse is dated "RHD 1625" but while the form relates to the original much of the external fabric is later. Various ridge and projecting brick chimney stacks all of C19 date with decorative clustered stacks. The segmental-arched entrance gives access to the courtyard which is largely timber-framed and partly of early date. The uprights are closely set and diagonally braced. Many of the ovolo-moulded timber mullion windows are original, others are not. The cross-passage door is on the opposite side of the courtyard and a staircase projects into the space at the south-west corner. Interior: a large proportion of the timber-framed structure still exists in the south, west and north ranges. The great hall has moulded principal posts which support moulded beams and chamfered joists of the inserted floor. C19 fireplace. In the room above the original roof trusses can be seen having moulded arch-braces which replaced tie-beams probably at the time when the floor was inserted. Wind braces to purlins and a ceiling with moulded timber members. 3 Tudor-arched doors (2 blocked and the central one C19) open from the hall to the cross- passage. 2 similar openings on the other side formerly gave access to service rcoms. The principal apartment to the west has heavily moulded posts, the moulding continuing via curved braces to the floor beams which in turn support moulded joists. C19 or C20 panelling. The west range contains cambered tie-beam trusses which are moulded, have king posts and carved roundels on the underside in the centre. The grand staircase (1630, Pevsner) has a C17-style moulded handrail, cannon-like balusters and massive finials on the newel posts. A gallery above has barleysugar twist balusters. The east range is considerably altered but has a fine plaster ceiling (early C19, possibly 1818) with rinceau and husk garland motifs and an Adam-style fire surround. Skull of Ambrose Barlow, martyred 1641, preserved in niche. Moated site the history of which can be traced back to 1292. The hall is an important survival of the open-hall courtyard-type house which, despite rebuilding, still retains its original form and much of its original fabric. It illustrates well the change from open-hall to 2-storey living in the C16. N.G. Philips, Old Halls of Lancashire and Cheshire, 1893. H. Taylor, Old Halls in Lancashire and Cheshire, 1884.

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