The History of The Round house - Chitterne

Listed Grade II

The note concerning the listing of the Round House states:

ST 94 SE CHITTERNE WARMINSTER ROAD (south side) 4/36 no 109 (The Round House) GV II

Detached house. Late C17, extended early C19. Rendered chalk, flint and brick rubble stone, welsh slate roof with brick stack. Entrance away from road; 2-storey, four-window south front. Four panelled door to right of centre, C20 door in former window to left, 4-pane sash to right, first floor has three 2-light segmental-headed casements to left and single-light first floor casement. Right hand bay is early C19 addition with semi-circular east end to right return: 4-pane sash to ground floor, 2-light casement and four-pane wide 12-pane sash to first floor. Rear, facing road has 2-light segmental-headed casement and C20 casements to ground floor, C20 casement and pointed casement with interlaced glazing bars to first floor. C20 bay added to west end in similar style. Interior has partly blocked open fireplace with raised timber lintel on brick jambs in kitchen. Early C19 drawing room in curved east end has reeded door and window architraves with paterae, door with 6 reeded panels, window shutters with reeded panels. This may have originated as a small single-cell cottage, addition of early C19 bay with unusual curved end possibly indicates that this may have been used as a toll cottage on the turnpike to Amesbury.

The Royal Commission for Historical Monuments

There are conflicting stories about the origins of the house. We were visited some years ago by two persons conducting a survey for the Royal Commission on Historical Monuments and they told us that the lower, square end of the house was 300 years old and the round, higher end, 150 years old.

The Round House as a Ship

We were told by the children of the previous owners that half of the house burnt down and it was rebuilt in Georgian style by the seafaring owner in a semi-circular shape to give the house plan the appearance of a ship. It certainly is a long narrow house, only one room wide, round at one end and square at the other with two roof heights. We also found, whilst renovating, an abundance of old ships timbers in the structure. However, in the entry of listed houses it is noted as an old toll house. It stands right alongside the old Bath to Sarum road where the road to Heytesbury divides off. So who to believe? See links to previous occupant Charles Morris who was a seafarer, or The Round End for more on this.

Previous owners

From the book by Rev. Canner, and my own research at the Wiltshire and Swindon Record Office, we know that the Manor of Chitterne St. Mary was acquired by the Paulet (also spelt: Paulett, Pawlett, Powlett, Pollet, Poulett) family early in the 17th century, at least before 1648, when Henry Paulet was listed as a taxpayer of Chitterne. The Paulets owned most of Chitterne St Mary until Paul Methuen bought it from them in 1758, so it was probably the Paulets who had The Round House built (assuming that late 17th century dating by The Royal Commission is correct). Paul Cobb Methuen sold the manor to Walter Long in 1830. He sold the house to Alice Mary Langford in 1897 and she sold it to G. and W.J. Poolman in 1917 who sold it to the Robinsons in 1976.