Record Details

NHER Number:2369
Type of record:Monument
Name:Raynham Park


Raynham Park was in existence by 1621, and had doubled in size by 1660. The park and formal gardens designed in the 17th century were depicted in a series of drawings by Edward Prideaux in the 1720s. In the 18th century the park and gardens were naturalised, and the lake was created, possibly under the influence of William Kent and Thomas Ripley.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TF 8852 2613
Map Sheet:TF82NE

Full description

Raynham Hall (NHER 2368) on the 1621 map (S2) has only a limited area of parkland beyond the area of formal gardens. The garden layout was one of the largest in England. The area to the north and south of the avenue leading west from the Hall was the small area of park on this map. The park steadily grew in size throughout the 17th century especially during the 1660s. This expansion was at the expense of open-field arable and common land.
An early 18th century map (S2) shows largely empty parkland with all the formal features removed, some informal tree planting has replaced them; Edmund Prideau’s 1727 illustration of the park (S2), ‘Lake from the West Front’, indicates that the area west of the river is informally planted. By the 1720s, the park extended c.300 hectares east of the river. By 1732, de-formalisation of the park immediately around the Hall was complete, known from a letter that year written by Lord Oxford; the lake was created, the walled gardens were abandoned, the kitchen gardens were relocated away from the Hall and the first Ha-Ha was built. The early 18th century map shows the relocated kitchen garden east of St Mary’s Church (NHER 2378), which was sited south-east of the Hall on the edge of the park. The main entrance to the Hall is via a road leading up from the Old Hall (NHER 2366) and the church.
A c.1785 map (S2) of the whole of West Raynham parish shows the area of the park, consisting of open grass, woods and a sparse scatter of standing trees. The park had extended south and a new trapezoid kitchen garden moved again onto this park extension, where it is located today, close to the main Fakenham road (today A1065). It was built on top of a road leading east from the church.
The First Edition Ordnance Survey map (S5) shows that some plantations within the park had virtually gone. The park had extended north-east and south-east, and there was now a wide tree belt in the north-east corner, and along the rivers leading to and from the lake, running north and south. A new entrance was established by the late 19th century from the Fakenham road. The avenue from the 1600s was re-established, mainly of lime trees, now about 150 years old. It was not shown on the 1840 Tithe award map (S6) but the size of the existing trees indicates it was planted not long after.
Since the 19th century the main change has been the return of most of the park to arable use. Most of the plantations in the park survive and only standing trees have vanished. Only the area close to the Hall, especially between the Hall and the lake remains under grass and retains many trees.
Within the park are earthworks from farming, roads and former gardens. Most of the trees in the park are oaks or sycamores, many over 200 years old, relating to the de-formalisation of 1720s/1730s.
Historic Parkland grade two.
See (S2), (S5) and (S6).
E. Rose (NAU);14 March 1994; 17 December 2002.
Updated by C. Hurst (UEA), 15 November 2011.

Context 1: Ice house.
Source [1] notes that the entrance is bricked up and owner was unwilling to have it opened.

Possible hollow way and possible ha-ha seen on NCC/BKS vertical survey of Norfolk, 1988.
Feature extends about 150m from TF 8847 2550 to TF 8848 2565 in grounds of Raynham Hall.
See (S1) taken 30 September 1988).
Located 13 January 1993 during NLA Earthwork Survey.
M. Flitcroft (NLA) 28 January 1993.

Monument Types

  • HOLLOW WAY (Unknown date)
  • AVENUE (LANDSCAPE FEATURE) (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • GARDEN (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • GARDEN FEATURE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • HA HA (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • HA HA (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • ICEHOUSE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • KITCHEN GARDEN (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • LANDSCAPE PARK (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • ORNAMENTAL LAKE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • PARK (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • TREE BELT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status

  • Registered Park or Garden
  • Listed Building

Sources and further reading

---Monograph: Williamson, T.. 1998. Archaeology of the Landscape Park: Garden Design in Norfolk, England, c. 1680-1840.. BAR (British Series). Vol 268. pp 24, 80-81, 154.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1996. TF8725/ACD - ACF.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1995. TF 8825ACE - ACF.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1995. TF8825/ACB - ACD, AK; TF8725/ACB - ACC.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1994. TF 8825ABK - ACA.
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Monograph: Pevsner, N and Wilson, W. 1999. Norfolk 2: North-West and South. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. pp 608-609.
---Record Card: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Post-Medieval. Raynham.
<S1>Aerial Photograph: TF8725 ABG, ABK, ACJ; BKS/NCC 4964-5.
<S2>Unpublished Document: Norfolk County Council. [unknown]. Inventory of Historic Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in Norfolk..
<S3>Designation: English Heritage. Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England..
<S4>Archive: NIAS. Norfolk Industrial Archaeology Society Records.
<S5>Map: Ordnance Survey, First Edition, 6 Inch. 1879-1886. Ordnance Survey 1st Edition 6 inch map..
<S6>Map: Bircham, W.G.. 1838. East Raynham tithe map.

Related records

2366Parent of: Raynham Old Hall (Building)
2378Parent of: St Mary's Church, Great Raynham (Building)
2368Part of: Raynham Hall (Building)

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