Jessamine House

Photo:Jessamine House c.1970

Jessamine House c.1970

15 High Street

Jessamine House is a handsome, red-brick, double-fronted house of five bays.  The house is probably late Tudor in origin, with a new brick frontage added round about 1700.  This frontage retains the casement (pre-sash) windows and has a dentil cornice typical of the William & Mary and Queen Anne period.

Below the cornice can be seen a fire insurance plaque featuring a resplendent sun, signifying that the house was insured by the Sun Fire Office.  These plaques provided a guide to the insurance company’s fire brigade.

During the Great Fire of Ashwell in 1850 the house was singed but otherwise unaffected.  The fire, having spread all the way from Bear Farm, burned down the malting to the rear of the house and stopped at the next property.

Jessamine Farm, including the house, was auctioned in May 1903 when the auction details referred to a back staircase leading to two servants’ rooms.

During the Second World War the house was a government tea store.

For some time the house was the headquarters of the Veteran Car Club of Great Britain, now in the barn behind, and the administrative office of a college; but it has now been unoccupied for a number of years.  Restoration and renovation work will be commencing soon to turn the house back into a family home.

This page was added on 14/05/2015.