- Belfry Cottage
Rue des Marais
Type of property
18th century country house with earlier elements
No recent transactions
Families associated with the property
- Le Couteur - Jurat Jean Le Couteur is shown on the 1859 Godfray map
- IDP 1714
Historic Environment Record entry
This is a rare survival of an intact historic interior, with plan form and much fine joinery, dating primarily to the late 18th century, but with elements from a much earlier building.
The exterior of the house retains its historic character. The house, outbuildings and adjacent unusual 18th century bell tower form a significant historic group which contributes to the rural setting.
The house, shown on the Richmond Map of 1795, appears to date to at least the 17th century, with late 18th century gentrification. East wing 'modernised' in 1950s. Outbuilding to east raised to two storeys post war.
John Wesley preached in a barn (since replaced) to the rear of the house on 23 August 1787. The roadside bell-tower was erected for this event, to call followers to the preaching. The former boulangerie with bell tower to south east corner is now called Belfry Cottage.
Old Jersey Houses
It is one of the failings of the first volume that it only identified houses by name and parish, without indicating which road they are/were in. It is noted that there were at least four farms in the immediate area of St Mary called Le Marais, named after the locality, and two are included in the volume, witho no indication as to where they are.
It is the St Mary Le Marais in Volume 2 which coincides with the HER entry, the reference to John Wesley's connection to the property providing confirmation.
Of the two covered in Volume One, one is now called Meadow Court and listed as such by HER. The other has a description which is too vague to identify it.
The entry for this Le Marais notes that the house has been much altered at different dates.
'The dormers and perforated ridge slates must be late Victorian. The windows have been enlarged in brick, and in recent years the traditional twelve-pane sashes have been removed. The interior, however, speaks of greater age, with Swanage paving in the hall, thick gable walls, and what can only be racks for storing wine or cider, in brick, in a service room attached on the west.'
Wesley preached here on 23 August 1787.
In 1809 Le Marais was described as 'the elegant and commodious house finished in the cottage style' of Mr Le Couteur. Jean Le Couteur, Constable of St Mary 1836-1840, Jurat 1840-1867, lived here, and is credited with inserting projecting stones in his field walls to make it easier to climb them.