The Master's House is of two storeys partly timber-framed and partly of brick. The roofs are covered with tiles and slates. It is of irregular L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the North and West. The original 15th century house formed part of the W. wing, with a central hall and kitchen and solar-wings at the East and West ends. This is a late medieval, timber-framed open-hall house with cross wings at each end. Tree-ring dating has shown that it is built from timber that was felled in 1487 and so it would have been erected either in the same year or the following one. It is a late example of a medieval hall house because in Herefordshire after about 1500 the preference was to build ceiled halls, with chimneystacks rather than an open hearth. The hall range contains a spere truss, with cusping, at the lower end; a principal truss, with arch bracing to the collar, over the middle of the hall; and a further decorated truss at the upper end. There were also projecting oriels on both sides of the upper end of the hall and at the cross passage, the latter possibly forming porches. Both cross wings are of three bays. The hall roof has two tiers of curved wind braces. The house was altered in the 16th and 17h centuries and in the 18th century the South front was rebuilt. An addition was made at the West. end in 1867.
Architect - Butler & Hegerty
The Master's House is one of the oldest buildings in Ledbury. It was the home of the Master of St. Katherine's Almshouses, founded in 1232. It was sold by the Dean and Chapter of Hereford Cathedral (Trustees of the Almshouses). In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries it was known as 'The Deanery'.
Architect : Butler & Hegerty