The Tithe Barn was built in the early 14th century as part of the medieval farmstead belonging to Shaftesbury Abbey. Its function was to store the produce of the home farm and also the tithes (a tenth of their produce) from the tenant farmers.Parts of the medieval manor, although much altered, remain in the house to the north of the barn.
King Ethelred gave the Manor of Bradford, to the Abbess of Shaftesbury in 1001. The barn is now owned and maintained by English Heritage.
This timber building on stone piers is a rare survival of its type and dates from about 1400. The wattle and daub panels of the walls were later infilled with Bradford stone. Of particular note is the fine medieval timber roof which remains intact.
The West Barn
A timber building (dated from some original timbers as 1290 / 1325) stood on this site and was converted to a stone stable in 1769. The barn has now been rebuilt, although not as an exact replica, and is used by the Preservation Trust for exhibitions and other purposes.