In January 2015, the Museum embarked on the dismantling of a late 18th century barn and early 19th century stables at May Day Farm, Tonbridge.
The buildings were in the path of a road widening scheme on the Tonbridge—Pembury section of the A21 in Kent. The work was led by Museum Carpenter-in-Residence, Joe Thompson, and the project has been partially funded through Balfour Beatty, the contractors for the road scheme.
After careful dismantling, the timbers were conserved and stored at the Museum, before re-erection in 2018.
Late 18th—early 19th century
Watch this fascinating time-lapse video of the structures being carefully dismantled:
The three-bay, oak threshing barn is estimated to date from 1780—1830, the significant features being the ridge board and the stud framing utilising a significant amount of re-used timbers and re-sawn slabwood.
The two-bay, oak stables are estimated to be of later date than the barn, from 1800—1838 (the latter date based on map evidence), again with ridge board and re-used and re-sawn timbers.
The building materials were repaired and conserved in the Museum’s Gridshell conservation workshop during 2017, prior to being re-erected at the Museum for spring 2018.
The buildings are sited near to the Museum’s Hay Barn from Ockley and will form part of a 19th century farmstead.
Top 3 Interesting Facts
The oak threshing barn dates from c.1780—1830, its significant features being the ridge board and stud framing.
The buildings were in the path of a road widening scheme on the Tonbridge—Pembury section of the A21 in Kent.
The building materials were repaired in the Gridshell conservation workshop during 2017 and re-erected early 2018.