Historic Jersey buildings
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Rue de La Grange, St Mary
Type of property
Very early historic country house
No recent transactions
Families associated with the property
Historic Environment Record entry
Meadow Court is an important group of early buildings retaining their historic character with extensive historic features of note, displaying Jersey’s vernacular tradition in the use of local materials and details including a very early example of an arched doorway and tourelle staircase.
Particularly distinctive features include the cider house. Also of note is a rare example of a medieval cross.
The house has early origins, 15th century, with developments in 17th and 19th centuries, refronted in the 18th century. It is shown on the Richmond Map of 1795.
The medieval cross was moved to its present position in mid-19th century. The column was removed from the Church of St Mary in 1851 – it formerly stood between the chancel and north chapel. Shown on the Richmond Map of 1795.
Approached down long driveway with gate pier and cross by roadside.
Old Jersey Houses
There is a strong tradition that there is a benitier in this house, hidden under the plaster at the foot of the tourelle staircase.
A pre-Reformation cross is broken and now mounted on a far later granite pillar at the entrance to the drive, which was formerly a public road, and turned right in front of the house and rejoined Rue du Douet opposite another Le Marais. The road has since been diverted and runs between La Grange and La Pompe. In the garden, at a point which would have been the angle of the road, is a large block of stone with a square socket in the top surface, clearly the base of the cross.
The south facade of the main house has been altered, as there is a straight unchamfered door lintel, and the windows, all of which have been enlarged, have an assortment of chamfered surrounds, none being complete.
The wing to the weat, now the press house, with a circular cider trough in situ, has an arch. It is single-voussoir with no shoulders, and a wide chamfer, with good but small chamfer stops. It could be a very early specimen.
The steps of the tourelle staircase have been boxed in. The widest is 5ft and the lowest, 3ft. Opening off the main sitting room, to the north, is a very small room, which from the outside is continuous with the tourelle. It has been suggested that this was a chapel, but there is no supporting evidence. It is more likely to have been a dairy or a storeroom.
In the 18th century this property belonged to the Arthur family, and there is a belief that the branch which lived here adhered to the Roman Catholic faith. It then passed into the de Gruchy family and, through the female line to Le Vavasseur dit Durell.
Notes and references