Record Details

NHER Number:2466
Type of record:Monument
Name:Ketts Oak


A large old oak tree in the grounds of Ryston Hall. It is reputed to have been a rallying point for rebels during Kett's Rebellion of 1549.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TF 6276 0056
Map Sheet:TF60SW

Full description

'Kett's Oak' (marked on Ordnance Survey). There seems to be no evidence for this attribution. The Ordnance Survey say the name is 'genuine' (!) but the references they give all refer to the Ketts' Oak that stood on Mousehold Heath, except one in the 'Eastern Arboretum' (copy in NCM Natural History Department) which claims that a map of the time of Charles II gives this name to this tree. However there is no historical evidence for connecting Kett with this area. Perhaps it is significant that (S1) marks the neighbouring estate of West Dereham Abbey as the seat of one Thomas
E. Rose (NAU).

Ordnance Survey card says that the tree has a metal plaque in front of it. Mr. Pratt of Ryston Hall says the tree is still standing, 17 February 1977.
E.Rose (NAU).

The map is dated 1675. Bryant suggests that the tree was a meeting place of rebels from Fincham and Swaffham going to Norwich, but this sounds a little far-fetched.
E. Rose (NAU).

However, (S2) states that there was a camp of rebels at Downham Market at the time of Kett's Rebellion, although Kett himself was not involved with them; possibly the name may therefore have come about by association of ideas, if the rebels were in this area.
E. Rose (NLA), 15 March 1993.

Press cuttings (S3) and (S4) in file.

Monument Types

  • NAMED TREE (Unknown date)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status


Sources and further reading

---Record Card: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards. TF 60 SW 3 [4].
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
---Record Card: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Miscellaneous. Ryston.
<S1>Publication: Faden, W. and Barringer, J. C. 1989. Faden's Map of Norfolk in 1797.
<S2>Article in Monograph: Rutledge, E. 1993. Kett's Rebellion, 1549. An Historical Atlas of Norfolk. Wade-Martins, P. (ed). pp 98-99.
<S3>Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1996. A rallying point for rural rebels (Letter to the editor). 9 July.
<S4>Newspaper Article: Lynn News. 1997. See Downham's hanging tree. 23 May.

Related records - none

Find out more...

Norfolk County Council logo Heritage Lottery Fund logo

Powered by HBSMR-web and the HBSMR Gateway from exeGesIS SDM Ltd, and mojoPortal CMS
© 2007 - 2020 Norfolk Historic Environment Service