The Merchants House, Widemarsh Street, City Centre, Hereford.
HR4 9EW Guide Price £90,000 + VAT

Contact property agent:

Hereford Office
01432 344 779

Intriguing Development Opportunity

Grade II Listed Building                                              

Formerly Forgotten Property                         

Dating back to 1700

Accommodation over 5 Floors                                  

Period Features including Fireplaces & Staircase

Planning Permission & Listed Building Consent Granted

Permission for 3 Self Contained Apartments (other residential possibilities STP)

Technical Start has been made

Permission for 3 Self Contained Apartments (other residential possibilities STP)


One of the best historic houses in Hereford – it was rediscovered about 20 years ago and there was quite a flurry of excitement at the time in conservation circles.  A note about it was put in one of the Civic Trust Newsletters but with no historical detail.  Not being on the street frontage it is difficult to place it in such things as the hearth tax and the later poll books.  With such an excellent staircase it presumably belonged to a well-to-do trader.  The Mansion House c.1695 across the road has a similar staircase and 29 Castle Street– now belonging to the Cathedral School – has one too I think.  As the staircase has a closed string this makes it closer to 1700 than 1730 – houses in St Owen Street of c.1730 have open strings with slender balusters.  The cross window is a good early feature too.  All of which suggests the brickwork is c.1700 – a dusky colour, fired with Forest of Dean coal – like 29 Castle Street – the Council Minutes in 1699 refer to the pollution caused by early brick makers around the city who were benefiting from the Wye Navigation, which was opened in 1695.  The brick makers were burning inferior coal in their clamps. 

The properties 2 – 5 High Town currently Hallmark Greetings (No. 2), Jean Jeanie (No. 3) and Manfields (No.s 4 & 5) are a close knit group of historic structures of considerable interest and significance.  Much is hidden from public view and at present only No. 3 is “Listed” although it is noted that Nos 1 – 3 form of group.

The block to the rear of these properties is a late 17th century house of hand-made red brick.  The stairwell and western portion survive, but the eastern part was demolished in 1962.  Only the ground floor was in use – the upper floors have been abandoned since the beginning of the 20th

century.  However, the remaining portion retains a very good original stair and includes a modelled plaster ceiling on the first floor as well as other historic fittings.  There is a cellar underneath the main building, which is linked by a vaulted brick passage to the cellars underneath No. 3 and is connected to a large vaulted brick cellar range underneath the yard.

The 17th century house was constructed to face a courtyard to the north and had an entry through an archway associated with the present No. 10 Widemarsh Street.  This building was, in the late 19th century, a public house called confusingly No. 5.  The courtyard now contains several 20th

century outbuildings, and a disused entry to the cellars which was constructed during the second world war as part of the air raid precautions.  The frontage block is not without interest.  No. 3 was probably built at the beginning of the 18th
century and has an original stair and a notable shop front of C1800, whilst No. 2 was rebuilt about the middle of the 18th century and also has an original stair. A full Shoesmith archaeological report is available from the agents office upon request.

Development Potential

The house may be retained as an individual home or converted to 2 maisonettes and a bed sit as permitted by formal planning and listed building consent.

The generous staircase and stairwell can be retained in all their splendour. The access to all levels and exit to the exterior conform well to the current building regulation requirements for a ' protected shaft' subject to installing fire doors to each individual unit.

The ceiling heights  throughout are generous and lend themselves well to the need to insert fire and sound proofing between each unit. The exception would be the fine plasterwork ceiling to the main first floor room where repair is proposed followed by fire proofing within the void and above.

The top duplex apartment in particular would be especially desirable as it enjoys extensive views of roof tops and rising land to the north. This is achieved by the proposed addition of roof windows below the lower purlin level.

The rear of Widemarsh Street ( in this location ) has existing high status residential accommodation with very good levels of privacy and security


Planning Permission & Listed Building Consent

Planning Permission & Listed Building

Consent was granted on 3rd July 2012. All relevant Documents are attached.



The proposed plans were drawn up by J.J Rann & Associates, Architectural Consultants. 01568 760427

We understand these plans have been passed for 3 individual units but subject to planning these could be changed to form 1 whole residential unit or 2 apartments depending on the individual purchaser.

All enquires to Herefordshire Council Planning Department  on 01432  260386.



We understand that:

* Mains Water is available to be connected at a cost of £3400+Vat.

* Mains Drainage - foul & surface connected.

* Mains Electricity (tbc)

* Mains Gas is available to be connected at a cost of £2726.99+Vat.


Quotes available from the agents office.



The property is located off Widemarsh Street in Hereford City via a pedestrian right of way next to Henryka (jewellers) and the property is found through a door on the right hand side.



Strictly by appointment through the Agents on 01432 344779




Internationalfor themselves and the vendors of the property, whose agents they are, give notice that these particulars, although believed to be correct, do not constitute any part of an offer of contract, that all statements contained in these particulars as to this property are made without responsibility and are not to be relied upon as statements or representations of fact and that they do not make or give any representation or warranty whatsoever in relation to this property. Any intending purchaser must satisfy himself by inspection or otherwise as to the correctness of each of the statements contained in these particulars.


The agent has not tested any apparatus, equipment, fixture, fittings or services and so cannot verify that they are in working order or fit for their purpose, neither has the agent checked the legal documents to verify the freehold status of the property. The buyer is advised to obtain verification from their solicitor or surveyor.


Lettings & Management

Our residential lettings department offers an efficient, professional service and we are always pleased to provide further information to potential landlords and tenants.. Please contact the Victoria Cook or  Andy Rogers  for further information on the lettings services we offer.


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16th July 2012