Great Asby Rectory

Has been described as a Possible Pele Tower

There are major building remains

NameGreat Asby Rectory
Alternative Names
Historic CountryWestmorland
Modern AuthorityCumbria
1974 AuthorityCumbria
Civil ParishAsby

Private house (Rectory up to 1983). 2 storey 'U'-shaped plan under graduated slate roof with stepped stone chimneys and stone copings. North end C14, possibly a Solar rather than a tower-house. Squared, coursed rubble with quoins on massive plinth. Remains of earlier copings show roof was once more steeply pitched than at present. Single square-headed C17 mullioned 2-light window with hoodmould to ground floor on north and east sides (north has cavetto moulding); three similar 3-light windows under continuous hoodmould to 1st floor north are C19. Pointed window to 1st floor east is C14 with 2 trefoil-headed lights (quatrefoil between), mullion, transom, and hoodmould. Access to barrel- vaulted undercroft through dog-legged passage on south side (now within 1834 rear extension); both original doorways survive with pointed heads and chamfered surrounds (outer has hoodmould). In 1983 a C14 deeply-splayed slit window was discovered inside undercroft in middle of north wall; 1st floor has large late C17/early C18 stone fireplace with false 4-centred arch and moulded shelf. Main block of slobbered rubble, probably C17 (replacement of earlier building) with inserted C19 doorcase and 2 sashes on east side; square head of stair window on west side re-used C14 (with 2 ogee lights) from church. South block of snecked rubble added 1866; sashes to north and east walls, 2-light gothic revival window to 1st floor east. (All C19 sashes are without glazing bars and most have hoodmoulds). 1670 wooden lock presented to Rectory by Anne Countess of Pembroke (mentioned in R.C.H.M. & previous list) now (1983) kept in Parish Church. (Listed Building Report)

Rectory (Plate 15), 70 yards S. of the church, is of two storeys; the walls are of rubble and the roofs are slate-covered. The N. wing was a small pele-tower built in the 14th century

It was altered and re-roofed in the 17th century when the existing main block seems to have been re-built. The E. and W. wings are probably 18th-century additions. The tower (33½ ft. by 23 ft. externally) is faced with squared and coursed stone. In the upper part of the E. end is an original 14th-century window of two trefoiled ogee lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head with a moulded label; internally it is rebated for shutters. The lower window in this wall and the four windows in the N. wall are probably of early 17th-century date and are of two and three lights with square heads and labels. The entrance to the tower is by a dog-legged passage in the S. wall with an original doorway at each end; these have two-centred arches and the outer one has a moulded label. At the E. end of the wall are marks of the roof of an earlier building replaced by the existing main block. The ground floor has a segmental barrel-vault of rubble. The upper floor has a late 17th or early 18th-century fireplace with a flat triangular head and a moulded shelf. The main block retains the labels of some 17th-century destroyed windows and in the W. wall is the re-set head of a 14th-century window of two trefoiled ogee lights. Inside the building is a large wooden lock (Plate 60) with the initials and date A.P. 1670 (for Anne Countess of Pembroke). (RCHME 1936)

Not scheduled

This is a Grade 2* listed building protected by law

Historic England Scheduled Monument Number
Historic England Listed Building number(s)
Images Of England
Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceNY680131
Latitude54.5126190185547
Longitude-2.49498009681702
Eastings368050
Northings513140
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink
Copyright Andrew Clark All Rights Reserved

Most of the sites or buildings recorded in this web site are NOT open to the public and permission to visit a site must always be sought from the landowner or tenant.

Calculate Print

Books

  • Harrison, Peter, 2004, Castles of God (Woodbridge; Boydell Press) p. 67
  • Salter, Mike, 1998, The Castles and Tower Houses of Cumbria (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 54
  • Perriam, Denis and Robinson, John, 1998, The Medieval Fortified Buildings of Cumbria (Kendal: CWAAS Extra Series 29) p. 255 (plan)
  • Emery, Anthony, 1996, Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales Vol. 1 Northern England (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) p. 209
  • Pettifer, A., 1995, English Castles, A guide by counties (Woodbridge: Boydell Press) p. 274 (slight)
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 490
  • Hugill, Robert, 1977, Castles and Peles of Cumberland and Westmorland (Newcastle; Frank Graham) p. 88
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus, 1967, Buildings of England: Cumberland and Westmorland (Harmondsworth) p. 248
  • RCHME, 1936, An inventory of the historical monuments in Westmorland (HMSO) p. 15 no. 4 plan [online transcription > http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=120728]
  • Curwen, J.F., 1932, 'Parishes (East Ward): St Peter, Asby' The Later Records relating to North Westmorland: or the Barony of Appleby p. 85-93 online transcription
  • Curwen, J.F., 1913, Castles and Fortified Towers of Cumberland, Westmorland and Lancashire North of the Sands (Kendal: CWAAS Extra Series 13) p. 250
  • Taylor, M.W., 1892, Old Manorial Halls of Westmorland and Cumberland (Kendal: CWAAS Extra Series 8) p. 138 online copy

Journals

  • Bouch, C.M.L., 1955, 'Proceedings' Transactions of the Cumberland and Westmorland Antiquarian and Archaeological Society Vol. 55 p. 337 online copy