Stratford St Mary


Pictures of buildings mentioned in the “Suffolk” volume of “The Buildings of England” series by Sir Nikolaus Pevsner.

Pevsner covers Stratford St Mary on pages 448/449 of the second edition.  After the church he says: “W of the church, on the S side of the road, Priest’s House, c1500, timber-framed, the window tracery and W porch not original.”  It can be seen here:

Until recently when someone who knew the village sent me an e-mail I was unsure of  where the three following buildings were, as Pevsner’s directions do not easily fit the  road layout.  The listed building data also gave me precise grid references.  So Pevsner continued: “Towards the SW exit, i.e. the bridge across the Stour and into Essex, first Corner House with carved bressumer (a date of 1596 on plaster - DoE) ...”

“... then, Weaver’s House, a good early C16 house.”  I was told in the e-mail that this was the home of Ida Hughes-Stanton, a poet, and that in the 1930’s it had a Georgian facade which she got up a ladder and removed.  Her obituary in the Independent newspaper (accessible on the web) noted that when she died in 1999 “The 16th-century half-timbered weaver’s house, bought in 1936 and still completely unmodernised in the late Nineties, became a haven for visitors of all ages...”.  and also “She is buried in the garden”.  The condition of the house cannot be much different 15 years later - this photo was taken in September 2014:

Pevsner continues: “Nearly opposite this Bay House, early C19, with a bay between two porches with RomanDoric columns.”

He then concludes with “1/2 m NW of the church Brook Farm (Lowe Hill House), a good timber-framed farmhouse of c1500.  Inside some Tudor wall painting of intricate strapwork.”  I’ve passed this many times but it is very difficult to get a photograph of it due to narrow roads and high hedges so here are a couple of screenshots from Google street view:

There are a couple of comments from former residents of Lowe Hill House on the web here.

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