The Royal Clarence Hotel, High Street, Ilfracombe, Devon
Site: The town was transformed by the tourist trade which began in a modest way in the late 18th century and exploded in the Victorian period when the town was largely rebuilt. The hotel was rebuilt in 1881 by the proprietor Richard Lake to designs by the architect W M Robbins, but the appraisal established that it incorporated the extensive remains of the original Suttons Hotel probably built between 1812-18. The four-story front has an eclectic style that makes the most of the limitations of its High Street site under a kind of Venetian style, even Moorish, arcaded parapet. The interior had been savagely re-ordered in the 20th century leaving little of architectural merit.
Summary of Project: Documentary research and appraisal of historic fabric and development.
Objective: To inform repair, modernisation and potential conversion to another use.
The Valiant Soldier, Fore Street, Buckfastleigh, Devon
Client: Dartmoor National Park Authority
Site: The Grade II listed Valiant Soldier was an interesting initiative from the Park and Teignbridge District Council. An alehouse since at least the 1780s, the existing public house dates from the late 19th century. It closed on 25 September 1965 and family of the last pub landlords remained as occupiers. Nothing was done to the place. The last publican continued to occupy the premises until 1996 but left the public house fittings untouched, and it was bought by Teignbridge District Council in 1997. By this time the place was so old-fashioned and full of 19th and older 20th-century fittings, furnishings, utensils and the rest that it seemed a viable ‘time capsule’ museum in a tourist area.
Summary of Project: Documentary research, appraisal of the historic fabric and its development with a photographic record.
Objective: To inform repair and conversion of the Victorian public house to a museum for Buckfastleigh and the presentation of early and mid 20th-century life through genuine artefacts.
The Old Coaching Inn, Fore Street, Brixham, Devon
Site: The Grade II listed c.1800 public house built in association with the early 19th-century development of a Devon harbour town, extended and refurbished in several phases in the later 19th and 20th century and in a poor state of repair.
Summary of Project: Documentary research and buildings analysis.
Objective: To inform the owners and Local Planning Authority of the development of a building in need of repair prior to reopening as a public house with accommodation.