Record Details

NHER Number:2192
Type of record:Monument
Name:Maidenhouse deserted medieval port


This area is the site of Maidenhouse, a medieval port and village. Fieldwalking has recovered medieval pottery, and aerial photography analysis has noted a possible medieval moated site. A number of other features noted on aerial photographs included linear features that may have been navigable channels or ditches.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TF 5968 1990
Map Sheet:TF51NE

Full description

Site of Maidenhouse, a port 1349-1379.
Information from O.K. Schram, who noted disturbed ground in 1959.
R. R. Clarke (NCM).

4 March 1986. Fieldwalking in well weathered ploughsoil.
Context 2. General scatter medieval sherds over west part site only. CLE AM field cent 5944 2002
Context 3 at 5948 2007. Concentration of sparse medieval pottery, sparse bone, sparse shell. No post medieval material. Set in low mound less than 1m high of light coloured silt 41m E-W x 28m N-S. CLE 6. NCM
R. Silvester (NAU), 4 March 1986.

18 March 1986. Fieldwalking.
Context 4 centred TF 5982 2003. Odd medieval sherds CLE AO.
Details as above.
R. J. Silvester (NAU), 21 March 1986.

4 March 1986.
Context 5. Possible moat noted around Margaretta House; centre of postulated Deserted medieval village. Shallow wide ditches. Extends on both sides of drive north of house, turning south along west boundary of grounds where it is 7m wide, 1.1m deep on west side and 1.4m deep on east; a possible outer enclosure on west.
See diagram in file. Under pasture. CLE AN.
R. Silvester (NAU), 4 March 1986.

For full details of wares, flint types etc see Fenland Folders

January 2003. Norfolk NMP.
(NGR amended from original TF 5940 1970).
The feature appears to only be shallow and is partially obscured by trees (S1), but reiterates what was recorded from field observation. To the north of Margaretta House is an east to west aligned linear feature, visible in four separate lengths running from TF 5969 2007 to TF 5947 2008, for a total length of 215m. It is not certain that all of these ditches are contemporary or part of the same feature. One of these sections of ditch turns at a right angle at its western end (TF 5957 2007) and runs southwards for a length of 25m, to TF 5956 2005. Approximately 25m to the south is a possible fragment of curvilinear ditch (TF 5957 2001) that may represent the south-western corner of the moat, but may be unrelated.
This is the area reportedly occupied by a medieval village and port. Certainly there may have been a navigable channel running close to the south of this location although there is little evidence for tofts and crofts of a village. The ditches to the immediate north and west of the house may be the traces of a moat, while the other ditches to the east may represent the remains of a feeder channel, but this by no means certain. Field survey in 1986 suggested that the ditch running towards the west was part of a larger ditched enclosure, attached to the moat. There is no discernible trace of this enclosure on the aerial photographs (S1-2). The feature to the south west may be the corner of a moat, but may equally be unrelated. It is curious that no further trace of the feature is visible on the southern or eastern sides. The current house may not, obviously, be situated within the centre of the moated area, or could be built over an infilled channel. These features could be drainage ditches or land boundary features.
M. Brennand (NMP), 24 January 2003.

Monument Types

  • MOUND (Unknown date)
  • DESERTED SETTLEMENT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • MOAT? (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Associated Finds

  • MOLLUSCA REMAINS (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • POT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Protected Status


Sources and further reading

---Fieldwork: Fenland Survey. CLE 40. FENS.
---Fieldwork: Fenland Survey. CLE 6. FENS.
---Fieldwork: Fenland Survey. CLE AM. FENS.
---Fieldwork: Fenland Survey. CLE AN. FENS.
---Archive: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Medieval. Clenchwarton.
<S1>Vertical Aerial Photograph: BKS. 1988. BKS 0479-0 07-AUG-1988 (NCC 3586-7).
<S2>Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1946. RAF 106G/UK/1427 4146-7 16-APR-1946 (SMR TF 6020A).

Related records - none

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