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LEIGH BARTON

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The site of a fortified medieval farmhouse at Leigh Barton, formerly a grange of Buckfast, including the south and west building ranges of the house, a gatehouse, section of curtain wall and fishpond in addition to buried remains beneath the Grade I Listed house. The medieval house formed a U-plan with the present farmhouse range to the north. The house has a rectangular, three room through-passage plan, and appears to have followed a fairly typical pattern of development for a Devon farmhouse of which eight major phases have been identified. The first is known only from archaeological excavation and the evidence includes post holes, stakeholes, and a wicker-lined pit which represent two phases of substantial wooden buildings which pre-date the earliest surviving stone built phase. The second phase saw the construction of a open halled stone building belonging to the late medieval period. The third phase is also late medieval and included the insertion of a garderobe. The fourth phase was the final medieval one, when a stone stair was added together with a first floor partition. The fifth phase witnessed the insertion of the fine 16th century timber screen, together with flooring over the passage, and the addition of a two storey porch. The sixth phase probably dates to the late 16th century and seems to have been primarily concerned with altering the developments made during the earlier part of the same century. In phase seven, which probably dates to the mid 17th century, practically the whole of the structure east of the cross passage was rebuilt. The open hall and any room(s) beyond were replaced by two rooms on each of two floors. Phase eight dates from the 18th century and included numerous minor alterations including the enlargement of window embrasures and insertion of new doors. The curtain wall and gatehouse were added in the 15th or early part of the 16th century along with the pair of ranges associated with the farmhouse, which were restored in 1984-6.

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