Building record MCC12 - 126 Hythe Hill / Dolphin Inn, Colchester


Late Medieval house at 126 Hythe Hill and The Dolphin Inn.


Grid reference TM 01330 24700 (point)
Map sheet TM02SW
1848 Parish ST LEONARD


Type and Period (2)

Full Description

Dolphin Inn and house. The upper storey of the main block and E. wing project on the S. front. Inside the building the W. wing has an early 18th-century staircase with close string and twisted balusters.<1> Formerly the Dolphin Inn. C15/16 origin. No. 126, 2 storeys... timber-framed and plastered, the roofs tiled. Now much altered externally. the upper storey projects on the south front and has restored or renewed exposed timber-framing. The roofs are tiled. In need of repair.<2> It was a timber-framed building of perhaps the 16th century or earlier, still standing but having been extensively restored in the 1950's.<3>The building is of three blocks. the primary block has an east-west side purlin roof and an attic floor with floorboards about 0.3 m wide. A fireplace in the 1st-floor room has a wooden lintel with a chamfered edge and ogee stops. A ?Victorian fire basket had been inserted into it. The existence of an apparently original window in the west wall of the attic shows that the timber-framed building to the west of No121 must be later because it blocks it. The roof of the primary block has rafters which rest on a 'foot-plate' which in turn runs across the side of the attic joists which in turn rest on the top-plate of the original north wall. This is a 17th-century feature which occurred at the New Market Tavern (CAR3, 207). The roof of the secondary block to the north (renewed in 1984) has a ridge-board. The east wall of this block was of brick and has had to be completely rebuilt. The pace has been a pub, known as The Dolphin. The timber-framing is false and presumably dates to 1908. The rafters in the primary block have been lengthened to provide enough overhang to cover the facade. The floors in the eastern, 20th century block were uncovered to reveal early 20th century cross-walls to support ground floorboards. Also uncovered were many small oysters in the underlying soil. The trench dug for the foundation of the new extension uncovered a well.<4>

Sources/Archives (4)

  • <1> Monograph: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. 1922. Royal Commission on Historical Monuments (England): Essex, (North-East). Volume III. p67.
  • <2> LIST: Department of the Environment. 1971. List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest: Borough of Colchester (Essex). p72.
  • <3> Monograph: Jephcott, Jess. A. 1995. The Inns, Taverns and Pubs of Colchester. p125-127.
  • <4> Monograph: Crummy, Philip. 1992. CAR 6: Excavations at Culver Street, the Gilberd School, and other sites in Colchester 1971-85. 6. p1028.

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Record last edited

Jan 23 2017 1:05PM

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