Mainland

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Jersey houses


Mainland, St Lawrence


SJ15MainlandStL.jpg



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Mainland.jpg

Property name

Mainland

Location

St Peter's Valley, Bel Royal

Type of property

A Jersey 'cod house', demolished in 1975

Families associated with the property

  • Gibaut: This Georgian mansion was built on the profits of the cod trade by the Gibaut family of merchants, but later generations established a very successful farm producing the heaviest crops of apples from the orchards. The house as it stood before demolition in 1975 appears to have been built for Philippe Gibaut (1764-1842), who was married to Elizabeth Gibaut, but some of the datestones at the property before its demolition are believed to have given misleading clues to its age. The main house was probably early 19th century, with a later wing added. Outbuildings may have been as early as mid-18th century.
  • Bechelet: In 1941 John Bechelet (1862- ) and his wife Augustine, nee Renault (1862- ) were living here with their son John Francis (1883- ), his wife Violet Florence, nee Le Cornec (1900- ), and his sister Louisa (1885- ). Also in the household were John and Violet's children Florence (1918- ), John Edward (1928- ), Harold Walter (1929- ), Lilian Lucille, Edward Francis, Janet Frances, Viola Florence and Kathleen Mary

Datestones

  • PGB ♥♥ ED 1802 - Philippe Gibaut m Elizabeth Dean, married 1794
  • PGB 1812 - Philippe Gibaut
  • MGB AP 1762 - Moyse Gibaut and Ann Payn, married 1759
  • 1749 MLC - corbel inscription
  • 1785 - kitchen stone
  • 1812 - press house stone

Old Jersey Houses

From Volume Two:

"This house was representative of a number of grand houses built by the 'Cod Barons' in the middle of the last century, and although totally divorced from any relation to vernacular archiytecture, such houses did constitute a part of the local scene.
"Mainland, however, no longer does so, having been demolished during the first half of 1975, and attracted a good deal of publicity in the process. A full range of photographs and notes were taken before the demolition hammers got to work, and a ground floor and first floor plans were drawn.
"We had here a design in which everything was sacrificed to the grand entrance, the hall and the entertainment rooms. There were but two bedrooms apart from those on a third floor, invisible from ground level and approached by a side staircase. Most of the first floor on the south was given to a ballroom with parquet flooring, in elaborate patterns in shades of brown.
"One is glad to know that some items were saved at the time of the great demolition. The two staircases, two entrance gateposts with their decorative pineapples, and some dated stones, have found new homes. But who wants a door ten feet high?"

Notes and references

These pictures taken by the author of Old Jersey Houses, Joan Stevens are in the La Société Jersiaise photographic archive

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