E.J.Wilkins

04 Jul 2007 804 views
 
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photoblog image Christchurch

Christchurch


Constable's House

This is known as the Constable's House. The constable of the castle that is. It is - here - beneath the +

Here is an extract from a really good article from the - Christchurch Local History Society - web site :-

Circa 1160, a stone-built house, usually known as the Constable's House, was built in the bailey on the bank of the mill stream. The ground floor, lit by four slit windows, was used as a storeroom. On the upper floor, reached by external and internal winding staircases, were the hall and solar. The hall was lit by five recessed two-light windows; those in the north and east walls retain their external ornamental carving, while the taller north window also has decorative carving on the inside, as it was above the high table.

Between the two windows in the east wall can be seen the site of the fireplace, whilst above it is a beautiful cylindrical chimney, one of only five Norman chimneys surviving in England and one of the three oldest in the country. In fact, it is the only one of these three that still has its house attached to it! Documentary evidence suggests that originally the building could have been roofed with Devon slate.

During the first half of the 13th century the sanitary arrangements were improved by the construction of a garderobe tower over the mill stream, the lower part of which can still be seen. Later on, a watergate was cut through the east wall, giving direct access to the stream, where there was probably a wooden wharf. Documentary evidence indicates this occurred around 1260.

.....

On the green, to the far side of the building, is the local Bowls Club.


Christchurch


Constable's House

This is known as the Constable's House. The constable of the castle that is. It is - here - beneath the +

Here is an extract from a really good article from the - Christchurch Local History Society - web site :-

Circa 1160, a stone-built house, usually known as the Constable's House, was built in the bailey on the bank of the mill stream. The ground floor, lit by four slit windows, was used as a storeroom. On the upper floor, reached by external and internal winding staircases, were the hall and solar. The hall was lit by five recessed two-light windows; those in the north and east walls retain their external ornamental carving, while the taller north window also has decorative carving on the inside, as it was above the high table.

Between the two windows in the east wall can be seen the site of the fireplace, whilst above it is a beautiful cylindrical chimney, one of only five Norman chimneys surviving in England and one of the three oldest in the country. In fact, it is the only one of these three that still has its house attached to it! Documentary evidence suggests that originally the building could have been roofed with Devon slate.

During the first half of the 13th century the sanitary arrangements were improved by the construction of a garderobe tower over the mill stream, the lower part of which can still be seen. Later on, a watergate was cut through the east wall, giving direct access to the stream, where there was probably a wooden wharf. Documentary evidence indicates this occurred around 1260.

.....

On the green, to the far side of the building, is the local Bowls Club.


comments (11)

wow, so much history, for us here in the new world, with only 500 years of western history it remains a wake-up call every time, to see how old things oin the old world actually are. I guess by then the Amerindians were happily living in peace with nature on this side of the world.
EJWilkins: There's a lot of history packed into a tiny part of Christchurch, easy to see it all in a short afternoon, if you don't dawdle. I think we tend to take it for granted, which is why I took some pictures to share with everybody.
I think I need to come to the UK just to visit all these wonderful ruins. Never mind the stuff that is still in working order. I don't know where else one can find ruins with such wonderful atmosphere like the one you have captured here.
EJWilkins: This is only a tiny part of Christchurch, which is a teeny little town. There's soooo much, everywhere, all round the country, it'd take ages and ages to see it all. I hope you do get over here some time, I'm sure you'd enjoy it, although it's a bit expensive.
This is an outstanding capture Ellie. Really phenomenal. Doesn't look like you went heavy on the pp either. What treatment if any did you give this picture? It feels and looks so authentic.
EJWilkins: Umm, not a lot of PP. I think I straightened it a bit and lightened it a bit, cropped, resized to make it smaller and then 'sharpened edges' to get the clarity back again. Despite everybody's best efforts to get me to use Photoshop I'm resisting, it's all far too difficult. If it doesn't look almost right when I download it, I throw it away. wink
That chimney is remarkable, especially as it looks it better condition than the house. Excellent the way you provide historical detail to accompany your photographs. I trust it is a suitable inspiration to the local bowls team!
EJWilkins: it does look to be in remarkable condition, perhaps it's because they took a lot more care dressing the stone to make the chimney?
The bowls team has got this to one side of their green, the keep to the other side, and the Priory in the background ... hopefully they get sufficient inspiration, but I wouldn't know, never played bowls.
  • Louis
  • South Africa
  • 4 Jul 2007, 11:17
They didn't pay this constable all too good. Couldn't keep the roof on the house smile The old stonework provides nice texture to the shot.
EJWilkins: Did you notice the little dark squares? They're something to do with the construction, I think, they put timbers there to use as scaffolding.
nice shot, crisp too
EJWilkins: Thanks Dotun. Not a patch on your pictures, but I'm learning. smile
Castles are great, aren't they? I love trying to omagine them intact and all their lives that would have been led in them. Nice shot. All the best, Dave
EJWilkins: They are, and this building seems so 'not typical' of anything 'castle-like', makes me wonder what else the parliamentarians destroyed.
Ellie, it is really interesting to see what you chose to photograph and compare it to my efforts at the same site. In this case, you photographed the whole ruin, I opted for a shot way down in the bottom left of your view and a little further to left. A tighter shot which was of the little arch over the water, and including a section of the iron railings. I think I shy away from whole buildings because I find the verticals difficult to manage.

This is another lovely one, you always seem to capture such a sense of place in your photographs. (:o)
EJWilkins: Take two people to the same place and you'll end up with two completely different sets of pictures. I know what you mean about capturing small details though, but I try to make sure I've got at least one 'whole picture' to get the little ones in context. I blame problem verticals on my camera ... nothing whatsoever to do with me!
(PS went to St Cross today.)
Would have been perfect in B&W
What I like (with the quality of your shots) is the comment wich gives deep explanations and make the visit very interresting !
I like this series of so many images with history!

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camera E-400
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shutterspeed 1/800s
aperture f/5.6
sensitivity ISO400
focal length 14.0mm
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