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Perrycroft, Colwall, Herefordshire

Date: 1893

Client: John William Wilson, MP

Listing: Grade II* (main house)

  • Historic England listed buildings description
  • Black Book entries 91, 226, 254, 287, 297, 367 & 439
  • Photographs & drawings
  • Perrycroft website
  • Publications
    • Anderton, S., 'Inclined to make the finest views' [Perrycroft garden], The Garden (vol.141, no.10, October 2016), pp.36-40
    • Archer, M., and Archer, G., 'Perrycroft : recently acquired documents', The Orchard (no.3, 2014), pp.63-65
    • ‘Curiouser and curiouser : Perrycroft, Upper Colwall, Herefordshire’, Country life (19th October 2011), pp.72-5
    • Havelock, R., 'Recollections and reflections of an inveterate Voysey visitor, Part 3' [Perrycroft & Wilverley], The Orchard (no.7, 2018), pp.51-91
    • Miers, M., 'In harmony with landscape: Perrycroft, Colwall, Herefordshire', Country life (20th July 2011), pp.72-5

 

Pevsner's Herefordshire (with Alan Brooks, 2012) says, in the Introduction section on "Secular Victorian and Edwardian Architecture":

"There is nothing else to note until the 1890s, but then a masterpiece, PERRYCROFT at Colwall, C.F.A. Voysey, 1893-5 (with later additions by him), his earliest larger country house, perfectly mature, easy, effortless, comfortable, unpretentious and without any of the period trim of the C19, the domestic equivalent perhaps of Lethaby’s Brockhampton-by-Ross Church."

Pevsner's entry on the house reads:

PERRYCROFT (1 2/3 m ESE of the church) is by C.F.A. Voysey, his earliest larger country house, built in 1893-5 (at a cost of £4,900) for the MP and industrialist J. W. Wilson; altered and enlarged by Voysey in 1907 and 1924.

It is approached from above, the hipped green Tilberthwaite slate roofs, with their massive battered chimneys, coming into view first. The entrance front, N, roughcast of course, is amazingly un-Victorian, yet not without grandeur. It is made into an L-plan by the attached service wing, NE, with water tower halfway along, its top half-timbered with flat ogee lead roof and tall spike with weathercock. The upper floor windows of the main front run in a long band from the side of the two-storey porch (on thin Doric timber columns), all along the front and on to the wing. On the W return, a square and a rounded single storey bow. The broad, partially jettied S front is quite different; unpretentious, sensible and graceful in character. Battered corner buttresses, recessed ground-floor centre, (with flat canopy and inbuilt seats), windows, again with horizontal emphasis, including two pretty oriels on brackets, projecting eaves on slender iron brackets – all favourite Voysey motifs.

Exceptionally well preserved interior, all the woodwork white. Two chimneypieces have Irish marble in white wooden surrounds, with long, slender, very tapering columns supporting the mantelshelf; the drawing-room fireplace has sheer green marble, almost Deco in effect. Door and window furniture also by Voysey. The plan is quite simple: library in the centre behind the entrance hall, drawing room, W (with playroom to its N), dining room, E. Voysey also laid out the gardens, with walls and pyramid-roofed summerhouse (of 1904) to the W.

The OUTBUILDINGS ..., all roughcast with green slate roofs, are mostly later or altered later. The LODGE, N, was made into a T-plan, with two-storey W wing, in 1914; big tapering chimney, some tiled courses at the corners of the eaves. To its W, the COACH HOUSE, forming an L-plan with its cottage with close-set first floor timbering; the longer part again has raking buttresses and cupola with flat-topped finial with weathercock. Further W and NW, two set of STABLES, 1903, with some original fittings. The COACHMAN’S COTTAGE, some distance S, built 1908, has a hipped tiled roof with brick chimney, hipped dormers, and central hipped porch.

The Historic England listed buildings database states of the Church of the Good Shepherd in Colwall (now converted to flats), "Foundation stone laid by J.W. Wilson of Perrycroft ... on 3rd August 1909 suggests, as does the detailing, a connection with Voysey". There is no mention of the church in the Black Book.

Perrycroft

Image from The British architect, July 6th 1894.


Page last amended 2nd August 2021