Record Details

NHER Number:8825
Type of record:Monument
Name:Site of Woodrising Hall and deer park


This is the site of Woodrising Hall, a moated house which was the seat of the Southwell family until the early 18th century. The Hall was associated with a medieval deer park, the location of which is uncertain.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TF 9913 0257
Map Sheet:TF90SE

Full description

Moated site of Woodrising Old Hall. The medieval hall was succeded by the Georgian Hall, to the north, which was in turn rebuilt after 1945.
Deer park here was 2 miles in circuit.
Owned by R. Southwell in 1581.
Listed in (S1) and noted on (S2 and S3).
E. Rose (NAU)

(S4) states that Woodrising Hall was said to have been built with material from Letton Church.
E. Rose (NAU) 19 May 1989.

Moated site measures approximately 60m square. Entrance over brick bridge on north side.
Moats water filled, maximum 4 to 5m wide.
Platform slightly higher than surrounding land, under mown grass, supporting five mature beech trees.
H. Paterson (A&E) 17 June 1996.

Queen Elizabeth I is recorded as having had dinner here on her way from Breckles to Thetford, according to source [1].
E. Rose (NAU) 16 January 1997

(S5) shows parkland as delineated on 1:10,000 extract in file, plus bounding woodland belts to north and west.
Medieval deer park noted above may well be within this.

RAF air photograph shows some linear features, but not wholly convincing as a medieval park boundary except perhaps to the south, also marked on 1:10,000 extract.
(S6) shows the park as a much smaller area.
B. Cushion (NLA) 10 September 1998.

September 2002. Moat Scheduled.
Scheduling Description:
The monument includes a late medieval moated site located at Woodrising Hall. The moat lies at the western edge of the former Woodrising parish, now part of Cranworth.
In 1086 land in Woodrising, previously in the possession of Alveva, was held by William of Warenne. A family, taking the name de Rising, held the land under Earl Warren and in the latter part of the 15th century it passed to the Southwells. During the 16th century the Southwell family established their seat at Woodrising Hall, said to have been constructed with material from Letton church. The land passed to the Weylands in the 18th century when a house, replacing the 16th century hall, was built adjacent to the moated site. The present Woodrising Hall, which was built in the 1960s on the site of the 18th century house, is not included in the scheduling.
The moated island is believed to be the site of the 16th century hall, evidence for which, in the form of foundations or buried foundation trenches, is likely to survive below the ground surface. The island is square in plan, measuring approximately 50m in width, and is slightly raised above the surrounding ground level. A water-filled moat, measuring approximately 6m in width, encloses the island. An 18th century brick arched bridge across the north arm of the moat provides access to the island and probably incorporates remains of an earlier bridge associated with the 16th century hall, it is included in the scheduling.
Water is provided via an inlet, marked by a metal chute, on the east arm of the moat, and an outlet, controlled by a sluice, is located close to the north west corner of the moat.
The chute and sluice, together with a concrete mooring on the north arm of the moat, are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included.
Information from (S7) and (S8).

The de Rising family held land here from the Earl of Warenne in 1086, until it passed to the Southwell family in the late 15th century. Woodrising Hall was the seat of the Southwell family until the 18th century, when the Weyland family built another hall nearby.
S. Spooner (NLA) 12 September 2005.

January 2006.
Elizabeth I stayed here for four days in 1578 on her 'progress through East Anglia'. She had stayed at Kimberley previously and went to Thetford afterwards.
Information from [2].
D. Robertson (NLA), 4 January 2006.

Monument Types

  • DEER PARK (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • MOAT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • GREAT HOUSE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status

  • Scheduled Monument

Sources and further reading

---Aerial Photograph: TG9902 F,G; TG 90/TF 99021/A.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1998. TF 9902H - K.
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
<S1>Publication: Shirley, E. P. 1867. Some Account of English Deer Parks. p 116.
<S2>Record Card: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Medieval. Cranworth.
<S3>Record Card: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards. TF 90 SE 13.
<S4>Monograph: Davison, A. 1988. Six Deserted Villages in Norfolk. East Anglian Archaeology. No 44. p 47.
<S5>Map: Ordnance Survey. 1824-1836. Ordnance Survey First Edition 1 inch..
<S6>Publication: Faden, W. and Barringer, J. C. 1989. Faden's Map of Norfolk in 1797.
<S7>Designation: English Heritage. 1990-2013. English Heritage Scheduling Notification. Notification. DNF417.
<S8>Designation: English Heritage. 1994? -2011?. English Heritage Digital Designation Record. Record. DNF417.

Related records - none

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