Ancient Monuments

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Dovecote 300m south of Hodnet Hall

A Scheduled Monument in Hodnet, Shropshire

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Latitude: 52.8497 / 52°50'58"N

Longitude: -2.5816 / 2°34'53"W

OS Eastings: 360928.966

OS Northings: 328180.122

OS Grid: SJ609281

Mapcode National: GBR 7Q.SHFX

Mapcode Global: WH9C8.9MXQ

Entry Name: Dovecote 300m south of Hodnet Hall

Scheduled Date: 24 June 1971

Last Amended: 9 March 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019652

English Heritage Legacy ID: 33828

County: Shropshire

Civil Parish: Hodnet

Traditional County: Shropshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Shropshire

Church of England Parish: Hodnet

Church of England Diocese: Lichfield


The monument includes the remains of a dovecote 300m south of Hodnet Hall
which was built in 1870. The dovecote is situated about 250m south west of the
site of the former Hodnet Hall, a large timber-framed mansion, which was
demolished when the new hall was built, and 130m west of a timber-framed barn,
dated 1619. Both of these structures lie within Hodnet Park, a 20th century
designed landscape incorporating earlier landscape features, including a
medieval deer park. Hodnet Park is a Registered Park and Garden Grade II.
The dovecote was constructed on level ground on top of a low ridge in an area
that had been previously cultivated. The broad cultivation strips (ridge and
furrow) that surround the dovecote are not included in the scheduling.
The dovecote, which is a Listed Building Grade II*, is a square two gable-
ended structure measuring 6.55m externally and 5.2m internally. It is built of
brick with dressed white sandstone quoins, kneelers (horizontal decorative
projections at the base of the gables) and coping stones, and a plain tile
roof with a central square wooden glover or louvre. On the ground floor in the
centre of the northern gable there is a low doorway, defined by white
sandstone dressed chamfered blocks and a lintel. The wooden door consists of
three boards held together with strap hinges. The doorway has been blocked
internally with brick. Above the doorway, on the exterior face of the wall, is
a recessed arched panel containing an ornamental terracotta surround bearing
the inscription `TM 1656 IM'. There is a smaller recessed arched panel on
either side of the larger panel, one of which contains a moulded figure of an
animal. Above these panels, and continuing around the building, is a moulded
stone string course and a row of lozenge-shaped recessed panels. Many of these
panels, like those in the northern gable, contain remnants of the former
render. Within both gables there is a two-light double-chamfered mullion loft
window, each constructed of white sandstone, and four recessed triangular-
shaped recessed panels above. A later (mid-19th century) brick-built
segmental-headed doorway in the centre of the southern gable at ground floor
level now provides access into the building. Within the building, lining the
walls, are the former brick-built nest boxes, many of which have been bricked
up. A timber floor supported on two wooden beams has also been inserted at a
later date. There is now no direct access to the loft, the former hatch having
been boarded up. The building is now used as a byre. The feed mangers attached
to the walls are excluded from the scheduling.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Dovecotes are specialised structures designed for the breeding and keeping of
doves as a source of food and as a symbol of high social status. Most
surviving examples were built in the period between the 14th and the 17th
centuries, although both earlier and later examples are documented. They were
generally freestanding structures, square or circular in plan and normally of
brick or stone, with nesting boxes built into the internal wall. They were
frequently sited at manor houses or monasteries. Whilst a relatively common
monument class (1500 examples are estimated to survive out of an original
population of c.25,000), most will be considered to be of national interest,
although the majority will be listed rather than scheduled. They are also
generally regarded as an important component of local distinctiveness and

The dovecote 300m south of Hodnet Hall survives well and is one of the very
few decorated square brick-built dovecotes in the country. Despite the change
in its use from a dovecote to a byre the nest boxes have been preserved,
together with many of the external features adorning the building.
The relationship between the dovecote and the earlier field system
demonstrates the changing nature of land use and tenure from the medieval to
the post-medieval period in this area.

Source: Historic England

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