Building of the Month December 2019: Cholleys Farmhouse, Horndon on the Hill, Essex
Located down a small track near the village of Horndon on the Hill in the Essex countryside, Cholleys Farmhouse stands empty and neglected. The grade II listed building dates from the 16th century and, despite the lack of proper care in recent times, still retains its timber frame and other original fabric. It is an important survivor of rural vernacular architecture. However, following decades of water ingress and consequential decay, it is in poor condition and requires considerable repairs and renewal to ensure that the fabric which survives is preserved.
The house is timber-framed and plastered, with a red plain tile roof. There are later additions with a mid 19th century parallel range to the south which is also timber-framed and plastered, with a grey slate roof. The farmhouse could be restored for residential use and there are a number of outbuildings which could be suitable for conversion to other purposes.
In October 2019, an application for listed building consent (19/01515/LBC) to demolish this historic farmhouse completely was submitted along with a proposal to build a new house in its place. This is despite a survey carried out by an experienced conservation surveyor only a year ago opined that 50-60% of the fabric was salvageable. Now the applicants assert that nothing can be saved and complete demolition is the only available course. SAVE has objected strongly.