Reg Haskell Photography

A La Ronde

SUMMER LANE 1. 5176 Withycombe Raleigh A-la-Ronde SY 08 SW 6/1 6.12.49. I 2. 1798. A circular stone cottage ornee built by the Misses Jane and Mary Parminter. The cottage consists of the central octagon which is thought to have been modelled on the basilica of San Vitale in Ravenna. (The Misses Parminter visited Italy and much of Europe between 1784 and 1794). The octagon is surrounded by 8 rooms each connected to the rest through an ante-room. Above the octagon is a gallery the outer wall of which is covered with designs in shells and feathers probably planned as an C18 domestic echo of the mosaics of San Vitale. This gallery is reached by a tiny staircase with grottos covered with designs in shells and other materials. Other rooms have some interesting craft work by the Misses Parminter including a feather frieze in the drawing room. Originally had thatched roof terminating in an octagonal gallery with bell cupola above. Tiled roof and dormers added early C20. Sash windows with diagonal glazing bars and diamond shaped windows to ante rooms.
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