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©  John Boothroyd ARPS

IoE Number: 483459
Photographer: John Boothroyd ARPS
Date Photographed: 19 July 2001
Date listed: 12 November 1953
Date of last amendment: 12 November 1953
Grade II

The Images of England website consists of images of listed buildings based on the statutory list as it was in 2001 and does not incorporate subsequent amendments to the list. For the statutory list and information on the current listed status of individual buildings please go to The National Heritage List for England.

WELLS ST5445 NEW STREET 662-1/7/177 (West side) 12/11/53 No.9 Ritchie House, with boundary walls and outbuilding GV II House at end of row, now part of Wells Cathedral School. Late C18 or early C19. Bath stone ashlar, Welsh slate mansard roof between coped gables, ashlar stone chimney stacks. PLAN: a double-pile symmetrical plan, with internal valley; central entrance hall, internal lateral corridor, and rear geometrical stair in semicircular well, not reflected externally; to the left is a cross passage to a rear secondary staircase, and a hipped, full-height wing projects rear left. EXTERIOR: 2 storeys with attics and basement, 5 bays. Plinth, cornice, plain parapet. Large sash windows in plain openings, 12-pane to ground floor and 9-pane to first-floor stone surround; the first 2 bays have 2-light stone casement basement windows, with plain mullions and to segmental heads. On 4 stone steps a glazed door in stone doorcase of attached Ionic columns carrying entablature and pediment. Behind the parapet are 3 dormer windows with segmental-arched roofs, the left-hand a double 6-pane sash, the others single 6-pane sashes. The right return is rendered, with 2 stacks joined by a straight parapet. At ground floor is a canted bay with flat roof and parapet on plain sashes, with a pair of french doors, and there are 2 small 9-pane sashes to the attic. The rear wall has 9 and 12-pane sashes, and 2 arched sashes with Y-tracery to the staircase. INTERIOR: all on a grand scale, retaining much original detail in shutters, doorcases, and doors; these generally panelled, with raised mouldings, and with reeded surrounds. The inner casing to the main entrance has fluted pilasters and an entablature, and the hall floor is in Minton tiles. Main rooms to left and right have fireplaces, to the left a boxed-in C19 cast-iron surround, and to right in white marble with heavy scrolls and tile insert; this room has a palmette frieze with cornice. The hall is entered through an elliptical arch to the staircase (repeated at the 2 upper levels), with panelled soffite and linings. The wooden geometric staircase has scrolled treads-the scrolls repeated across the trimming of the first floor landing-reeded stick balusters, and a swept handrail. There are 2 Gothick lights with Y-tracery to this staircase. The secondary stair, with stone flag floor carried through from the side passage, is an unusually large open-well, and has stick balusters. This also descends to the basement, which has a series of transverse brick barrel vaults. SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: to the N of the main house, adjoining the party boundary near the street front are the remains of a C16 outbuilding, formerly on 2 floors. This is in rubble, roughly square on plan, and retains the upper part of a stone doorway with 4-centred head; the lower parts of the jambs are below the present ground level. Extending northwards from the NE corner of house, starting with a curved break forward, is a random stone wall on ashlar plinth, with plain coping, leading to a boarded gate; this returns along the N edge of the site, and across the rear at a height of approx 2.75m. The walls form part of the streetscape opposite the junction of The Liberty with New Street.

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