Weigh House

The Weigh House is an historic building in French Street, in the Old Town, with a fascinating history. In the mid thirteenth century, it housed the royal Tron, or weigh beam, scales and weights. Known in medieval times as the Peysage or Poysage House (from the Old French ‘peser’ meaning to weigh) it was where merchandise, particularly wool, was weighed to assess the amount of customs due before they were sent from Southampton to ports across Europe.

The building was restored in the 1930s only to be burnt down during the Southampton Blitz. The most comprehensive programme of repairs since then was completed in 2022. The work was funded by Southampton City Council and carried out by Chichester Stoneworks Ltd. It included:

  • Removing all the hard cement mortar used to point the stonework in the past replacing it with lime mortar. This is a more traditional material that is breathable and chemically compatible with the stone and will ensure the monument remains in a better condition in the longer term
  • Stabilising the walls by replacing the wrought iron anchors with a stainless steel Cintec anchor system inserted inside the walls
  • Repairing both the windows. Some of the stonework was in such poor condition it had to be replaced and the old metal frames had corroded so those have been replaced as well
  • Installing ‘soft capping’, which is turf containing a wildflower mix laid on top of the walls to protect them from decaying in the future

If you would like to find out more about the Weigh House, and the medieval vault next door, you can book onto a tour on the Visit Southampton website

August 2022 - work completed

May 2022 progress update

April 2022 progress update

Weigh House gallery

Weighhouse Drilling Holes For Structural Reinforcements
Drilling holes for structural reinforcements
Weighhouse Interior
Weigh House interior
Weighhouse Repairing Medieval Arch2
Repairing medieval arch
Weighhouse Revealing Blocked Medieval Doorway
Revealing blocked medieval doorway
Weighhouse Removing Hard Mortar2
Removing hard mortar
Weighhouse Fragment Of Arch Revealed
Fragment of arch revealed
Weighhouse Medieval Masonry Before Repointing
Medieval masonry before repointing
Weighhouse Before 1935 Restoration
Weigh House before the buildings around it were demolished in the 1930s (Southampton Cultural Services: Archives)
Window North Wall Edit
Medieval window in north wall. Rediscovered and repaired in 1936. Photographed soon after the building burnt down (Source: Historic England Archive)
19Thc Warehouse Edit
The Weigh House was reused as a warehouse in the 19th century. Drawing by Thomas Hart 1835 (Southampton Cultural Services: Archives)
Post Blitz Wall Edit
East wall eight months after roof was destroyed in the Southampton Blitz. Gable removed in 1955 (Source: Historic England Archive)
Anne Neville Edit
Anne Neville, 16th Countess of Warwick, profited from the weighing fees during the 15th century. Her daughters married into the Royal Family.
Weigh House New0
Outside view of Weigh House following works completed in 2022.
Weigh House New1
Inside view of Weigh House following works completed in 2022.
Weigh House New2
Chichester Stoneworks recreating a photo taken in 1936 of stonemasons restoring The Weigh House.

History of the Weigh House

Changing use through the centuries SHOW

Timeline of major events SHOW