Re: Re: ‘Dutch Billys’
This is a, two bay, twin-Billy is it not?
The two first floor windows appear to be original, but above that, the single window on the second floor is pretty clearly not original. Above this wider, more modern, second floor window, we can see crearly a central rain water outlet, draining to a meandering down-pipe, and corresponding to the location of a central valley gutter. The tiny twin roofs that are just about visable in the photograph would have been almost identical in scale to the surviving roof structures at 25 James’s Street.
Whereas the high parapet on the James’s Street house could be argued (spuriously in my opinion) to have been (with the roof structure itself) some kind of unusual ‘Georgian’ emsemble, the parapet on this Newmarket house has pretty clearly been modified and, in this case, there really isn’t any scope for speculating on ‘Georgian’ involvement.
There’s not much attention to fashion here, the roof ridges have been slightly truncated and the tiny areas of hipped roof are apparently merged with a slate capping on top of the brick parapet. This can neither be original, nor logical, except in the context where crumbling pediments have been lopped off and the roof made weather tight with the absolute minimum of investment.
This is a rough sketch overlay of the top photograph (extended slightly at either end).
I’ve changed the second floor window arrangement on house A (removing the more modern window) to match the two bay arrangement on the first floor, and given it the twin gables that I believe it would have had. We can argue about the actual detail, but whether we regard it as an impressive form of ‘Billy’ or not, there’s little scope (IMO) for envisaging an alternative elevation on this house.
Sorry I didn’t get back to you before on this; I’m replying now following the prompt in the Thomas Street thread 🙂
I’ve studied that photo under the magnifier myself in the publication where it appears, and there may be two parallel roof spans there, which added to the central water outlet might make it a former twin gabled house. But come on, it’s not exactly an open and shut case, is it?
A facade which goes from two windows on one floor to one window on the next floor as this one does generally points to a gable apex above the single window. Is there any reason in this case to believe the “modern” second floor window ope is not just an earlier ope enlarged? If you look at the photo a different way, the ‘right hand’ span may be central over the house, and the bit of dark matter of the ‘left hand’ span might be something next door. Granted the central water outlet does throw a spanner in the works. Then again that could be just a quirk; note the funny vertical shape of it, apparently running all the way through the parapet. Also the rear portion of visible roof appears distorted and a bit smaller; it might belong to something else – a return or another building. All things considered, more info on the building would IMO be needed before considering it strong evidence of a former twin gable house.
What might be interesting is is to see the original copy of that photo, assuming it has been cropped slightly in publishing. An extra couple of millimetres of information on the left might make a difference.