Chatterton House, Redcliffe Way, Bristol

BaRAS recently undertook an archaeological desk-based assessment of Chatterton House, Redcliffe Way, Bristol. Chatterton House, a Grade II listed building, was constructed in 1749 as a master’s house for the adjoining Pile Street School founded in c.1739.

chatterton house

General view of western elevation of Chatterton House, from the west

The poet Thomas Chatterton, whose father was Master of the Pile Street School, was born in Chatterton house in 1752 and subsequently educated at the school.

In the c.mid-1930s, the façade of the c.1739 school building was dismantled and re-erected to the south on the Pile Street pavement line. The latter also entailed the erection of a further structure and new set-back façade at first-floor level. On the creation of Redcliffe Way in the late 1930s, the recent building behind the façade was demolished and the c.1739 façade re-erected in its present position, but leaving the 1749 house (i.e. present Chatterton House) in its present location.

phippen street and pile street bristol

Land-photograph of Phippen Street and Pile Street, from the south-west, taken c.1900 showing the fairground to the east of Chatterton House (Bristol Central Library)

From the late 1930s, Chatterton House become an ‘island’ due to the demolition or destruction of the surrounding buildings and has since become more-or-less surrounded by modern development.

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