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Phelps, Andy and Quartermaine, Jamie (2016) AGRICULTURAL BUILDING, CHURCH LANE, TUNSTALL, LANCASHIRE Documentary and Building Survey Report. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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Lancashire County Council has requested the completion of a Level 2 historic building survey of a barn at Church Lane, Tunstall, Lancashire (Fig 1), as mitigation in advance of
its conversion to a residential property. In response, Phil Stephenson commissioned Oxford Archaeology North (OA North) to undertake the building survey and this report sets out the results of the work in the form of a short document. The fieldwork was carried out on 13th July 2016.
The agricultural barn under study is located at NGR 361120 473699, south of Church Lane and in the middle of an enclosed field north-east of Tunstall village. The area under study comprises the agricultural building and its field and a surrounding radius of c 500m which includes the eastern parts of Tunstall village and the Old School House to the north and Church to the east. The close proximity of Thurland Castle to the south, outside the study area, would certainly have impacted on the medieval and post-medieval development of this locality and has been examined as part of the work on the historical background.
The agricultural building is standing within a series of three or four enclosed fields which appear not to have been developed or built on, as evidenced by the available mapping, since the early nineteenth century, and reflect a notable gap between the church (which was documented in the Domesday Book) and the historic centre of the village. If the two centres were linked in the past, then there exists the possibility that elements of the village may have been abandoned in the medieval or early post-medieval periods.
The barn has an eighteenth / early nineteenth century character and was seemingly first depicted on the 1824 Greenwood map, but may have been earlier. By the time of the first detailed map, the 1847 OS first edition map, the eastern and southern extensions were in place, and would indicate that the primary phase of the building was earlier than that date.
The quantity and character of the reused timbers found throughout the barn suggests that it had been constructed using timbers from an earlier structure. The original barn was designed as a multi-functional building, capable of housing live-stock when necessary but also for the storing and processing of harvested crops. The tall wide cart entrance at the centre of the western side allowed fully laden carts to enter from the fields, while the opposing doorway of the primary build, was just high enough to allow an unladen cart to leave the building on the farm side of barn. There was no wide doorway through the north-eastern extension, indicating that the use of the barn for threshing related only to the original barn, and by the time that the extensions had been constructed the barn was primarily being used for accommodating stock.
The fact that the earliest phase of the barn was a threshing barn is potentially significant, as threshing barns were typically in direct association with a farm, this contrasts with fields barns which were intended to accommodate stock. The implication is that there was formerly a farm house at the site, which is no longer extant.

Item Type: Client Report
Subjects: Geographical Areas > English Counties > Lancashire
Period > UK Periods > Post Medieval 1540 - 1901 AD
Divisions: Oxford Archaeology North
Depositing User: barker
Date Deposited: 14 Jul 2020 08:12
Last Modified: 30 Oct 2020 11:10
URI: http://eprints.oxfordarchaeology.com/id/eprint/5789

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