Timber-framed Buildings in West Yorkshire

Stank Hall Barn

Ancient timber-framed buildings have always attracted the attention of antiquaries.

Dr Henry Johnstone's 17th century notebooks (for a projected history of Yorkshire) contain a drawing of the front of Rockley Hall located on The Headrow in Leeds. The drawing shows it having two timber-framed wings with the profile of a crown-post roof. This is important evidence for the use of the crown-post in West Yorkshire where the king-post roof form was predominant by the late-15th century.

The surviving solar wing of Cad Beeston at Beeston Hill, Leeds is one of the few buildings to survive with a crown-post roof (the timbers were dendro-dated to post-1421 AD). Cad Beeston is one of a group of high-status court-yard plan houses that include Horbury Hall, and Haselden Hall in Wakefield (the latter is now demolished).

Back in the 1960s a small number of timber-framed buildings were recorded, during controlled demolition, by the West Yorkshire Archaeology Service; these include Elland Old Hall and Rothwell Manor. At Elland a 13th century aisled hall overlay one of the 12th century, and the crown-post roof of the solar wing had evidence for passing-braces, a very early feature.

Rothwell was more typical of the 15th and 16th centuries with its close-studded walls and king-post trusses with I-framing (where the infilling studs are parallel to the post).

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