Tyne and Wear HER(10388): Newcastle, Westgate Road, Nos. 273 and 275 - Details
Newcastle, Westgate Road, Nos. 273 and 275
Shown on Ordnance Survey second edition as Westgate Hill Grange. Two substantial townhouses of the 1820s facing south. The Westgate Road frontage was not designed to be the principal façade. They are now a single building. No. 273 is older than 275. It is two storeys high. The plain brick façade has three bays with the door at the west, under a pilastered doorcase with a brocken pediment. A flight of six sandstone steps rises from the garden. There is a stone semi-basement. There is a flat sandstone sill band at ground floor level and a plain string course above the ground floor windows. The windows have splayed sandstone lintels. The second floor windows have shallow stone sills. The roof is slate. A modern dormer attic has been added. The rear (Westgate Road) façade is quite plain. There are no string courses. The windows have flat brick arches. Inside No. 273 there is a stone-flagged kitchen in the basement at the front of the house, with a service room at the rear. A brick-floored passage runs to another area at the back of the house. The brick arch for this area is visible at the east end of the north wall. A patch of recent brickwork just above ground level marks the position of the lintel of a basement window. There were originally two rooms on each floor. The chimney is in the centre of the house. There is a dog-leg staircase in the west bay at the back of the house. This has an open string with moulded tread ends and a mahogany hand rail on slender newels and square balusters. The east wall of the former passage has been removed but a six-light arched window remains above the door. The glass is now painted dark green. No. 275 is similar to No. 273, however a clear straight joint can be seen on the front and rear of the building, showing that the larger four bay building is a later addition. There is a central chimney stack near the east end of No. 275. The chimney breast is still visible in the ground and first floor rooms at the south side and two corbels can be seen in the basement, supporting the hearth. Few original features survive in No. 275. A modern partition divides a principal reception room that has a decorative plaster cornice. In the north wall there are two arched recesses, one housing a door from the rear room, the other is blind. This was probably a sideboard alcove. The fireplaces are blocked up. The roof truss in both houses has a light collar and through purlins. The two houses have been connected through an inserted opening in the party wall. The bottom of the stair has been turned and a back door inserted with four semi-circular sandstone steps. Around 1883 Nos. 273 and 275 were owned by shipowner Mr Bowser. He knocked through the two houses to create one property. He moved out soon after a 'woodshed' was built next door which ruined his views and shaded his garden.
Ordnance Survey Second Edition of 1896; Archaeological Services University of Durham, 2005, 273-281 Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, archaeological desk-based assessment and building recording; letter from The Summerhill Society, 18 November 2013; Mike Griffiths and Associates, 2013, Condition Survey and Assessment