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The 500 year old house which was moved for a new road

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posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 09:50 AM
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In 1961 a new road was being constructed in Exeter (England) but a 500+ year old house was in the way, so it was moved in one piece, around 100 yards on wheels.



Number 16 Edmund Street, or Merchant House, was in the way of the new road and was scheduled for demolition. It dated from about 1500, although some thought it may be 14th century. It was certainly one of the oldest surviving houses in Exeter. In a poor state of repair, it didn't seem that important a loss.

However, with pressure from archaeologists, it was listed just in time, as an important building of architectural and historic significance, and the demolition was halted. Exeter City Council, with help from the government decided to spend £10,000 to have the house moved out of the way of the new road.
I work in Exeter quite often so kind of take the building for granted, but it is a lovely structure and I'm glad the folk back in the 60's had the foresight to save such a local treasure. Here's a picture of how she looks today...


Anyway, that's about all I can say about it, just thought readers may find it an interesting watch/read.

Quote source Exeter Memories




posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 10:03 AM
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a reply to: grainofsand

Interesting they were able to do that 50+ years ago. The house doesn't look bad for being over 500 years old, although it looks like a precarious lean to the right on the bottom floor.



posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 10:09 AM
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If you think that is amazing I'd suggest you look at The Rising of Chicago. They were raising 750 ton buildings 6 feet 150 years ago.
All in the effort to create efficient sewage systems.



posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 10:10 AM
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a reply to: UnBreakable

It is a rickety looking construction for sure, and I agree completely that 60's ingenuity was pretty impressive.
Can you imagine it these days? There would be focus groups, health and safety overkill, and would probably take years before it actually happened.


It took several weeks to prepare the house for the move - the timber framework of the house was criss-crossed with strengthening timbers and iron wheels placed at each corner attached to hydraulic jacks. No iron bolts, screws or supports were used against the original timbers, to prevent damage. The structure was top heavy, so during the move, the jacks would be used to ensure that it was always kept upright, with frequent checks made using spirit levels.


Some beautiful old buildings in Exeter, including parts of the original Roman city walls.
I'm working there tomorrow, may take some pics on a break.



posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 10:11 AM
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a reply to: jellyrev

Wow, I'll look that up...feel free to add any links to the thread if you like, it is certainly on-topic.



posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 10:15 AM
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a reply to: grainofsand

Would like to see the pics if you go.



posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 10:21 AM
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originally posted by: UnBreakable
a reply to: grainofsand

Would like to see the pics if you go.

Will do, I'll feel self conscious taking them though, will look like a tourist lol



posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 10:22 AM
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Gorgeous house!!!!! You'd think they would have done something about how it leans. Doesn't exactly look safe. Do you know the history of the place?



posted on Aug, 16 2016 @ 10:37 AM
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originally posted by: Night Star
Gorgeous house!!!!! You'd think they would have done something about how it leans. Doesn't exactly look safe. Do you know the history of the place?

I don't know sorry, even the historians argue about how old it is as there appears to be no records.
Merchant house was it's old name though and it was close to the river which was a thriving city port back in the day.
Wool and cloth exports were historically big business so I'm romantically imagining the house was involved in that trade.




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