Dating a Dutch barn


Mixed Farmer
We have a Dutch barn we are potentially looking to convert. The difficulty is, it’s in the curtilage of a listed building, so unless the barn is post 1948 it is not possible to convert it. Dad’s best guess is it would be a mid 40’s building, but how do you go about dating it for certain? What era were most of these round roof hay barns built?


Nah, I prefer dating young women.
But the advantage of dating a Dutch Barn, is that what you see is what you get,...…...there are no sides to them.

But seriously, all that I can add is that search maps and arial photos pre 1948. If the farm has been sold pre or post 1949, there may be details may be on the deeds or in description of the holding. ( Our own Dutch barn was apparently built by two ex-RAF service men and it was their first job after getting de-mobbed after the war).
Also, as an aside, although your Dad thinks it was built mid forties, would there have been much farm building going on during the war or soon after as steel and sheeting were in massive short supply for the war effort and for rebuilding the infra structure after war's end?
If you are unable to put an age on the building then the chances are that the planners won't be able to pin it down either. If consent is refused then you may be able to contest it on a technicality. Our local planning department have had a number of decisions reversed on technicalities.


Arable Farmer
Scottish Borders
Have a close look at the sheets. My barn has 'Kelso Stn 9/3/22' stencilled on every 8th sheet, so it's got a big birthday coming in another 2 years.

Already mentioned is the idea of looking at old aerial photography. If you are looking to date it either side of 1948 then you are in luck, as the RAF carried out a whole of the UK photographic aerial survey in 1946/47 using the reconnaissance variant Mosquitos. Ordinance Survey carried out a lot of further photography, and the access for the RAF and OS surveys is online and accessible to the public, for a fee. I've got every available photo for this farm from the Scottish database.
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If you want the barn to have been built post 1948 who the hell is going to be able to say it wasn't?
If there are any aerial photos suggesting otherwise simply insist they are showing an old timber building that was taken down and replaced with the Dutch barn in the 50's.
Don't over think these things, it is whatever you want it to be. And if it needs concrete block sides to be sure it passes make sure it has sides before you apply.

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