Pembroke Cottage

The original Pembroke Cottage has stood by the side of a small country road near Hartley Wood in Hampshire, England for over 600 years. It was the new’ addition to a 13th century cruck hall. It was added sometime around 1450. The new addition has a thatched clasped purlin roof sitting on a box frame.

A chimney was added to the gable end.

The external wattle and daub panels were knocked out and replaced by brick infill. The open mullion windows were no longer required when the chimney was added and were concealed by the chimney.

The cottage now belongs to the Straitfield Saye estate owned by the Duke of Wellington. After World War II the cottage fell into a very bad state of repair.

During the autumn storms of 1994 the thatched roof collapsed in the bay connecting the two parts of the cottage. The cottage was restored in 1995-96 and is now occupied by a farming family of six.

In the Fall of 1996 Tom Musco of Royalston Oak Timber Frames lead a workshop that
raised a replica of Pembroke Cottage in the United States.

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Tom Musco, the founder and principle timber framer of Royalston Oak, began his professional woodworking career as a musical instrument apprentice to Peter S Kyvelos in Belmont, Massachusetts in 1973. Tom spent several years making and repairing a variety of Middle Eastern and Western stringed musical instruments. One of his dulcimers was featured in the first Fine Woodworking Design Book in 1976. Tom and his wife Judy moved to Royalston, Massachusetts in 1977 and began building timber frames, an interest he discovered in a beautiful timber-frame barn on his in-laws farm in Petersham, Massachusetts. His first frame was for his shop and his second frame was for his house. He made furniture and timber frames until 1980 when his shop was struck by lightening and burned to the ground along with all his tools and machinery. He built a new timber framed shop with the help of his neighbors and began timber framing full time. Tom was a founding member of the Timber Framers Guild. He has done workshops in NE ( Pembroke workshop at TFG ) and England. In 1989 Tom and his crew participated in the famous Concord Barn Raising episode of This Old House. He has built timber frames in New York State, the Hamptons, Tennessee, North Carolina, Alaska, and all the New England states except Rhode Island. Tom has crafted almost 200 timber frames since 1977. Tom is also an excellent cook with an interest in food of Sicily, where 3 of his 4 grandparents were born. He has written a series of articles on Sicilian food which you can read at the website of the Umass Journalism in Sicily Program.