Record Details

NHER Number:2627
Type of record:Building
Name:Oxburgh Hall

Summary

Oxburgh Hall was founded by Sir Edmund Bedingfield in 1482, when a licence to crenellate was granted. A large square mansion house surrounding a courtyard, the hall retains a tremendous 15th century gatehouse approached over a closely pressed moat and flanked on either side by two seven-storey high octagonal towers. As supporters of Queen Mary, the family’s fortunes declined after her fall and this prohibited any renovations, preserving to this day the quintessentially Tudor structure of the hall. Whilst the hall range south of the gatehouse was pulled down in 1775, it was rebuilt in the massive renovation work of the Victorian period, when the architects Pugin and Buckler gave the hall interior its current layout, and were responsible for the romantic Gothic style exterior that represented the height of fashion.

Images

  • Oxburgh hall front elevation  © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service

Location

Grid Reference:TF 74042 01274
Map Sheet:TF70SW
Parish:OXBOROUGH, BRECKLAND, NORFOLK

Full description

Oxburgh Hall.
Grade I Listed Building.
Magnificent moated hall of 1482 altered in 17th, 18th, & 19th centuries. Victorian garden features, dovecot, hydraulic ram. The well may have been excavated 1983.
For full details see (S1), (S2), and secondary file.
E. Rose (NAU), 9 March 1983.

Also see aerial photograph in (S3).
Photos, and press cuttings also in file.
The county number overlaps with that of the surrounding park, NHER 30479
For finds from nearby sites, and possibly from dredgings of moat see NHER 32085.

July 1951. Listed, Grade I.
Fortified Country House.
Licence to crenellate 1482. Extensive refurbishment during the late 18th and 19 centuries with the involvement of J.C. Buckler and A.W.N. Pugin. Brick with some stone dressings. Pantile roofs. Square moated site of four wings around a courtyard.
The main fabric of the north, the west and half the east wings is 15th century. The single storied south wing is of 1865 with an adjoining 18th century section to the west and a mainly early 19th century tower to the east. Mainly two storeys with attics.
North façade. Central three-storey 15th century gatehouse with a four-centred vaulted archway flanked by polygonal turrets decorated with moulded brick arched corbel tables. Western turret houses winding stair with small quatrefoil windows. Upper storeys of eastern turret have single light arched windows with rectangular hood moulds. Centre bay with a four-light stone first floor window with arched transoms and brick and stone relieving arches. Similar three-light second floor window just beneath a four-centred machicolation. Stepped crenallations. Early 18th century three-bay bridge with crenellated parapet crosses the moat. Flanking facades with 19th century Gothic fenestration, moulded brick arched corbel tables and crenellated parapets. Two crow-stepped attic gables with pairs of Cosseyware chimney shafts.
East façade. Northern half is 15th century. Southern half 18th and 19th century including the four-storey tower to south west corner. One 18th century semicircular-headed sash window with glazing bars. Otherwise 19th century Gothic including a stone-dressed two-storey canted bay with carving and two stone-dressed oriels. Arched corbel table. Two crow-stepped attic gables with single Cosseyware chimney shafts, gabled north wing and two gabled dormers.
Fabric of west façade almost entirely 15th century with Fenestration and decoration similar to that of east façade.
Interior. Adequately described in Oxburgh Hall, National Trust, 1982, except for the outstanding 15th century roofs over the northern half of the east wing and over the complete west wing. Fully moulded arch braced roofs with king posts rising from collars to braced ridge beam. Refurbishment of eastern wing attributable to J.C. Buckler. (S4).
Information derived from (S5).

September 1978. Recording of exposed features.
Brick foundations were revealed by a mechanical excavator cutting a new ha-ha on the southern side of the south arm of the moat. These were cleaned and recorded, revealing a brick culvert. The culvert is presumed to have been an outlet for the moat and was seen to terminate between two rectangular foundations set at right angles to it. Two splayed revetment walls were seen to butt against the foundations. A drawing printed in (S10) which is derived from a map of about 1725 depicts a rectangular arrangement of streams to the southwest of the hall. One of these streams ran north to south and terminated at the approximate location of the culvert. It is likely that the revetment walls held back the bank of this stream.
See (S11) and (S12) for further details.
H. Hamilton (NLA), 28 April 2009.

September 1978. Field Observation.
A lump of compacted oyster shells was located within 'The Wilderness' at Oxburgh Hall and photographed.
See (S13) for further details.
H. Hamilton (NLA), 28 April 2009.

May 1983. Excavation.
A brick-lined shaft revealed during refurbishment of the ground floor tower room was excavated. The shaft was dated to about 1480 and has been interpreted as either a well or a garderobe shaft. It contained a sealed deposit of pottery and architectural fragments inserted as fill in 1838.
See (S2), (S6), (S7), and (S9) for further details.
H. Hamilton (NLA), 28 April 2009.

6 October 1993. NLA air photography.
Oxborough Hall and gardens clearly visible. Also earthworks of formal gardens still visible.
H. Clare (NLA), 1 February 2001.

December 1999. Earthwork Survey.
Survey of gardens to west and south of hall.
See NHER 30479 for further details.
P. Watkins (HES), 10 February 2014.

2002.
Investigation and analysis, measured survey (including REDM), photgraphic recording and documentary research for the National Trust. This work has concentrated on elucidating the original form and subsequent evolution of Oxburgh Hall. It has identified surviving late 15th Century roofs in the West range and the North half of the East range, and has allowed a fulled interpretation of the fabric and original function of the North, East and West ranges. Considerable further light has been shed on a series of major remodellings, notably in the late 17th and 18th Centuries and the early-mid 19th Century.
See (S14).
D. Holburn (HES), 14 October 2011.

See (S16) for the results of survey work undertaken by English Heritage between 2001 and 2005.

28 June 2006. Casual find.
Medieval sherd.
See description in file.
A. Rogerson (NLA), 4 July 2006.

2006. Dendrochronological analysis.
Tree-ring dating for the hall cannot securely date the construction of the building but it does suggest that the trusses of the west range roof date to between 1437 and 1463 but there is evidence that these trusses had been rearranged and could have originated from another building on site or elsewhere. The surviving trusses of the eastern range are clearly from a different timber source but did not yield a tree-ring date and this could support the notion that other parts of the hall date from the late 1470s or 1480s.
See (S14).
S. Howard (HES), 31 August 2011.

The five hundred year old oak gates are being removed and repaired at Oxburgh Hall, after damage was caused by weather last year. The gates were replaced on February 21st but more work on the gates is planned. The gates are a part of the original building and were finished in 1482.
See (S15) for further details.
M. Langham-Lopez (HES), 7 February 2013

Monument Types

  • ARCH (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • COURTYARD (Medieval to Post Medieval - 1066 AD to 1900 AD)
  • GATEHOUSE (Medieval to Post Medieval - 1066 AD to 1900 AD)
  • GREAT HOUSE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD) + Sci.Date
  • MOAT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • MOAT (Medieval to Post Medieval - 1066 AD to 1900 AD)
  • DOVECOTE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • GARDEN FEATURE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • GREAT HOUSE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • HYDRAULIC RAM (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • PRIEST HOLE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • WALL (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • WELL (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds

  • POST (Undated) + Sci.Date
  • BRICK (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • DRESSED STONE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • POT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • ARCHITECTURAL FRAGMENT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • BRICK (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • POT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • WORKED OBJECT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status

  • SHINE
  • Listed Building
  • Listed Building

Sources and further reading

---Aerial Photograph: TF7401 A-C,E-H,K-Y,AA-AM,AS,AU-ABC,ABE,ABF-ABP.
---Aerial Photograph: TF 7401/ ABU, ABX-ACA.
---Graphic Material: Various. Various. Architectural plans..
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1997. TF 7401ACJ - ACX, ABQ, ABT.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1997. TF 7401ABR - ABS, ACY - ADN, ADQ - AEC.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1996. TF 7401ACB - ACH..
---Unpublished Document: Letter.
---Map: Finder's Map..
---Monograph: Liddiard, R.. 2000. Landscapes of lordship: Norman castles and the countryside in medieval Norfolk, 1066-1200. Landscapes of lordship: Norman castles and the countryside in medieval Norfolk, 1066-1200.. pp 112-113.
---Archive: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards. TF 70 SW 6 [4].
---Monograph: Tom Williamson. 1998. BAR Series 28. British Archaeological Reports Series 28.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1997. Hall's well in the garden. 3 Jun.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1952. Presented to National Trust. 11 November.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1950. Oxborough Hall. 16 September.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1981. Oxburgh Hall's £60,000 facelift. 24 September.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1982. Landmark year for Oxburgh Hall and its Lady. 5 January.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1983. 50 NT jobs in E.Anglia. 3 August.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1985. Festive facelift for stately home. 27 December.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1987. 'Where's the shop?' asked Henry…. 27 January.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1989. House fit for a king. 28 April.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1990. Faceligt for historic hall moat. 5 October.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1997. Doing battle for Queen of Scots. 2 July.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1996. Last-gasp hope for fish in the moat. 20 September.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1999. Clearing the way to reflection. 14 June.
---Newspaper Article: Lynn News. 1997. Vital work on hall's historic tapestries..
---Newspaper Article: Lynn News. 1990. Fish rescued at historic hall.. 9 October.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1986. A roof with a view…. 19 June.
---Publication: Cooper, G., Taylor, G., Boursnell, C.. 1986. English Herb Gardens.
---Newspaper Article: Lynn News. 1995. Centenary challenge to help our heritage.. 20 January.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2008. Behind the scenes at historic house. 7 November.
---Photograph: 1900. CBH 11. Entrance to Oxburgh Hall..
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2009. A family home with a wealth of history behind it. 19 June.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2009. Aerial grand tour of sheer magnificence. 10 October.
---Publication: Country Life. 1929. Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk. 17 August.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2009. Record-breaking year for National Trust properties. 10 November.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2009. Hall now ready to rebuild greenhouse. 22 December.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. ?2009. 100 years of history down the pan.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2011. Conservation work brings back memories of true comedy classic.. 18 May.
---Article in Serial: 1897. Country Homes: Oxburgh Hall.. Country Life. 22 May, p1.
---Article in Serial: Paul Miles. 1980. A French Parterre in Norfolk.. Country Life. 26 June, p1.
---Article in Serial: Oxburgh Hall, a property of The National Trust.. Country Life.
---Article in Serial: 1951. Oxburgh for sale.. Country Life. 16 March, p1.
---Article in Serial: 1929. Oxburgh Hall - I, Norfolk.. Country Life. 10 August, PP8.
---Article in Serial: H. Avray Tipping. 1929. Oxburgh Hall - II, Norfolk.. Country Life. 17 August, PP9.
---Article in Serial: 1903. Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk.. Country Life. 11 April, PP8.
---Article in Serial: J. L. Nevinson. 1976. Embroidered by Queen and Countess.. Country Life. 22 January, pp3.
---Article in Serial: Cliver Wainwright.. 1993. Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk - II.. Country Life. 16 December, PP2.
---Article in Serial: Cliver Wainwright.. 1993. Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk - I.. Country Life. 9 December, PP3.
---Publication: 1978. Oxburgh Hall - The National Trust.. The Curwen Press Ltd.
---Photograph: 1992. Dovecote at Ocburgh Hall, Emneth. Print.
---Article in Serial: Wainwright, C.. Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk - I IN Country Life. Country Life.
---Photograph: 1952. Photograph of stained glass window at Oxburgh Hall.. Black & white.
---Archive: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Medieval. Oxborough.
---Secondary File: Secondary file.
---Slide: Various. Slide.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2013. New champion for region's treasured heritage sites.. 818/05/2013.
<S1>Publication: National Trust Guide.
<S2>Article in Serial: Rose, E. J. and Jennings, S. 1985. The excavation of a brick-lined shaft and its contents at Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk. Post-Medieval Archaeology. Vol 19 pp 35-47.
<S3>Aerial Photograph: Muir, R.. 1983. History from the Air. p.180.
<S4>Publication: Buckler, J.C. and Tipping, H.A. 'Oxburgh hall'. 1929. Country Life. 66.
<S5>Scheduling Record: English Heritage. National Heritage List for England.
<S6>Photograph: Rose, E.. 1983. CLD 7-10. Excavation by NAU at Oxburgh Hall, Oxborough..
<S7>Photograph: Rose, E.. 1983. CLD 18-24. Excavation by NAU at Oxburgh Hall, Oxborough..
<S8>Photograph: Rose, E.. 1983. CLD 25-6. Exterior of Oxburgh Hall..
<S9>Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1983. Ancient well being probed. 29 May.
<S10>Serial: 1915. The Bedingfelds of Oxburgh.. Vol 2.
<S11>Unpublished Document: Wade-Martin, P.. 1978. Oxborough Hall. Foundations exposed during construction of new ha-ha wall on south side of moat, September 1978..
<S12>Photograph: Wade-Martin, P.. 1978. BBS 1-14. Recording of exposed features by NAU at Oxburgh Hall, Oxborough, 1978..
<S13>Photograph: Wade-Martin, P.. 1978. BBS 15-17. Field observation by NAU at Oxburgh Hall, Oxborough, 1978..
<S14>Article in Serial: Gurney, D. and Penn, K. (eds). 2003. Excavations and Surveys in Norfolk, 2002. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol XLIV Pt II pp 368-384. p 379.
<S15>Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2013. Opening the gates to 500 years ago.. 22 February.
<S16>Monograph: Menuge, A. 2006. Oxburgh Hall, Oxburgh, Norfolk. A Survey and Investigation of the Moated House. English Heritage Research Department Report Series. 22/2006.

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