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Wealden Hall, 49 & 51 Goodramgate
Purchased by Mr Cuthbert Morrell at the same time as No. 49 in 1930-31 for restoration by the York architect, Mr Harvey Rutherford, this property was originally of four timber box framed bays. The two end bays were of two-storey construction and the middle bays are of two storeys open to the roof to form a hall. The construction, dating back to late 15th or early 16th century, is of Wealden type which is very rare in this area, as of over a thousand surviving Wealden Halls in 1970, only twenty were to be found outside Kent and the Home Counties.
Characteristics of a Wealden Hall are a centre open hall flanked by two jettied double storey bays. As the jetties are not a structural requirement it was thought that men who were wealthy enough to pay for such indulgencies built them for decorative purposes. This fact, and the large open hall, indicate that 51 Goodramgate was originally built as a house for a higher status occupant. This property differs from the typical Wealden mould at its rear because the rear bay was not jettied. Inspection of the timber frame showed that there were never any windows to the rear elevation. This could indicate site limitations, which would render urban Wealden Halls different from their rural Kentish contemporaries. The construction of No. 51 was completed during the heyday of the Wealden Hall method.
Two windows with square timber mullions were originally unglazed, but were probably shuttered in bad weather or may have been covered with a coarse canvas. This was similar to the window in the west gable of the Merchant Adventurers’ Hall, which was formerly unglazed but had a shuttering groove.
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