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A Home is a House is a Ruin

Pictured here is Coalbrook House, Pontyberem, a building dating from the 17th and 18th centuries, with some later alterations. At one time, it had a thatch roof, but it is now roofed with plain tile, the full-height projecting porch being covered with corrugated iron sheets. The two large chimney blocks each have four square stacks with overall moulded cap. The square-headed door has a shallow fanlight, moulded wood doorcase, flat-pointed head with carved spandrels and small rossettes above, and plain ledge hood. A moulded eaves cornice continues round the porch and across the base of the brick-faced gable.

HomeInside is a 17th century staircase, with heavy moulded strings and handrails, carved square-section balusters with downward taper, and tall square newels with finials. The ceiling of one ground floor room is divided by a beam with moulded plaster ornamentation; one compartment has a moulded plaster ceiling, plaster cornice and frieze with egg-and-dart and guilloche ornamentation. On each side of the Victorian firegrate is a full-height engaged column with plaster capital.

The house is now unoccupied, falling into decay and a prey to vandalism. Although it is included in the list of buildings of special architectural or historic interest, its future seems far from assured. Because its advanced deterioration would make restoration costly, demolition is threatened.

Sic transit gloria.....

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