The history of ownership and occupation of the properties at the southern end of the east side of High Street (modern numbers 66-93) is very speculative.
Records are sketchy, and confusing. This page is the current "best attempt" to clarify the history of these properties, but much further work still needs to be done. It is possible that the historic boundaries do not match the modern ones.
Earliest information: <1500
Original estate: ?Chantry of Blessed Virgin Mary (??Chantry of Holy Trinity)
Common Rights? Yes (Frontage 31ft with 86 High Street; 1 horse or 2 cows)
Date of current building: 1449
Listed? Yes - Grade II
These two semi-detached properties are amongst the oldest in the street – being a two-bay cruck frame dating from 1449.
Despite the appearance of the High Street frontage, 85&86 High Street comprise a two-bay cruck house, which had a single bay open hall at its north end (86 High Street). The roof of the north bay is heavily smoke blackened. Smooth single curved cruck blades are held by a saddle which carries square set ridge-pieces.
It is the only property in Hungerford known to have a cruck frame construction, and it is very possible that 85&86 High Street are the oldest surviving properties in the town.
In October 2009 the timbers of 86 High Street were assessed for dendrochronological study. The project was a joint initiative between the owners (Clive and Dianne Wynell-Sutherland), the Hungerford Historical Association (under Chairman Lois Pihlens), and Andy Moir of Tree-Ring Services.
The result of the survey was of great interest, and two of the samples could be precisely dated to a felling date during the winter of 1448/49. It is likely that the two-bay house was erected in 1449. This is only 50 years after John of Gaunt died.
If you would be interested in having your timber-framed property assessed for tree-ring dating, please contact Andy Moir via the Tree-Ring Services website.
- 85 High Street (white), Mar 2007
- Conjectural reconstruction of timber construction by John Brooks, c1985
1449 Date of original cruck-frame building.
<1500 (NH) These are 2 or possibly 3 former tenements belonging:
- 1 burgage to the Chantry of the B.V.M. in Hungerford, the gift of Thomas Dyne and
- ½ burgage to the Chantry of the Holy Trinity.
1552 (NH) the same, except
- (i) "late" chantry property, the chantry having been dissolved by Henry VIII
- (ii) Trinity tenement late in tenure of Hy Kingston, now in tenure of Jn Rowland, B.V.H. and 2 acres of land late in tenure of Wm Abyse(?) and now of Thomas Awstyn.
In each case the Holy Trinity is ½ burgage and on north and BVM is 1 burgage, and on south side.
1573 (NH) In 1573 the ?covenant ?tenement names are confused, there being two ½ burgages late of Our Lady on the north side, and 1 burgage late of Holy Trinity on south, and 2 acres. The misattribution of chantries is clearly an error, but the property on the north side has "doubled". The tenants, all of whom have a lease by indenture from the "former" of the late chantry rents, are Thomas Bacon, Nicholas Clowghe and Edmund Browne.
1591 (NH) The 1591 survey repeats the misattribution of the earlier survey of 1573, and shows Clowghe and Browne still in possession. It is not clear, however, who, if anyone, has succeeded Bacon. Clowghe, we are told, paid, in addition to a quit rent of 4d., an annual rent of 10 shillings.
1606-09 (NH) The surveys 1606-1609 show the same set up – widow Joan Clowes on the north side (quit rent 4d, representing a half burgage), then George Sharpis similarly (half burgage) then on the south side widow Browne in 1609 taking the place of Robert Browne in 1606, plus 2 acres, but quit rent 4d (1/2 burgage).
We know that Nicholas Clowes was a weaver; his wife Siby (nee May) died in 1588, and Nicholas himself in 1594. Another Nicholas Clowes, broad weaver, died 1597; his wife Joan (nee Pearce) came from Combe. She survived, possibly until 1631. They had a son, Nicholas, baptised 1590.
Thomas Bacon died 1594.
In 1594 was buried "Mother Browne, mother to Robert Browne, labourer". Robert Browne died 1607.
1605 burial of Jone daughter of George Sharpis.
George Sharpis buried 4 March 1616/17.
Inventory of Gilbert CLOWDES, of Hungerford, Berks, husbandman, 10 July 1662
Appraised by: Edmund Stephens, Edward Playsteede
His wearinge apparrell and money in his purse 01 10 00
In the hall of his dwellinge house, one iron pott, one brasse kettle, one old tableboarde, one chayr, two stooles, two benches, one old cupboard, one old kiver, one old tubb, one old wheele, one Temser, one bucket, two wooden dishes, trenchers, two little pewter platters and other lumber 00 13 10
In his lodginge chamber, one high bedsteede, two flock bolsters, one feather pillowe, one kiver, two old coffers, two barrells, two shelves and one beetle 01 00 00
In the loft over the hall, one borded bedsteede, one flockbed and two bolsters, one coverlet, one blanket, one paire of sheets, two tables with one frame, one greate Chest, one Coffer, one box, one seych, one leather bottle and one little spitt 01 00 00
His lease and estate --?—in his dwellinge house 05 00 00
Two milk cowes, one bullock and one weanlinge calfe 05 10 00
One sow 00 16 00
Some old boardes and old flakes(?) with other lumber 00 02 00
The totall sume of this Inventory is 15 11 10
1676 (NH) In 1676 widow Clowes occupies a position in the QRR analogues. She might be the widow of Gilbert Clowdes (buried 1662) who leaves a D/S will referring to his dwelling house (leasehold) but there may have been other Clow(d)es at the time and one cannot be sure. Gilbert Cloudes is only male with that surname in the Protestation Oath signatories from Hungerford (1641/2).
Tenuous as this account is up to this point, therafter the trail goes even vaguer.
There is a gap in knowledge between 1676 and 1819…
1819 (EA) ?Hall
1841 (CS) George ?Butcher (or ?Belcher) Hostler
1847 (CL) William Robert Hall (own); George Belcher (occ)
1851 (CS) George Belcher (59) Postillion
1861 (CS) Elizabeth Belcher (53) laundress
1861 (CL) Mrs White (own) - Mrs Belcher (occ)
1871 (CS) Mary White - staymaker + Daniel Batt - lodger
1881 (CS) Lydia White - Staymaker
1896 (CL) Lydia White - (own & occ)
1902 (T&M Register) Heir of George White (owner)
1903 (T&M Register) Lydia White (occupier until 1911
1912 (T&M Register) William Henry Belcher (occupier 1912 until 1914)
1914 (CL) ??Dev of William Hoare
1916 (TM Register) C A Stallibrass (occupier until ?1938)
c1918 (Mrs Edmonds, Priory Ave) Mr Stallibrass moved into 85 HS.
Undated (T&M Register) Frederick Barnard (owner)
1932 (QR) Mr F. Barnard (Stallibrass) "House late W.R. Hall", q.r. 4d.
1939 (T&M Register) Thomas Edward Savoury (occupier until ?1967)
1939 (Blacket's) T.E. Savory
1947-1956 (CL) Thomas Edward Savory
1963-1970 (CL) Joan Florence Norman
1968 (T&M Register) Clive Theodor Norman (owner until 1971); Joan Florence Norman (occupier until 1975)
1972 (T&M Register) Joan Florence Norman (owner until 1976)
1976-2000 (CL) Derek Neville Weeks
1977 (T&M Register) Derek Neville Weeks (owner & occupier)
c2000 Bought by Janet and John Willis.
2005 (CL) Derek Neville Weeks (occupier)
2011 (CL) Karen Neate (occ)
2016 (CL) Void
2016 Mrs Rita Phillips (occ).