Record Details

NHER Number:30463
Type of record:Designed Landscape
Name:Houghton Park


This landscape park was founded around 1707. Paths, rides and plantations were laid out in a geometric design and in 1715 to 1720 extensive formal gardens were added adjacent to Houghton Hall (NHER 3546). The park was expanded and altered to the designs of Charles Bridgeman between 1723 and 1730 and many elements of his designs survive. During the 19th and 20th centuries the formal gardens were replaced with simplified garden designs. Some abandoned garden features, and various features from the pre-park agricultural landscape are visible as cropmarks and earthworks on aerial photographs.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TF 780 284
Map Sheet:TF72NE

Full description

Park founded around 1707. Greatly expanded 1723-1730, the village being moved in the latter year. Bridgeman involved in the planning. Geometrical layout survived until about 1790; large plantation to west with geometric rides made 1800. Entrance to park moved in 1798. Much of plan lost in 19th century, but restoration took place in 20th century. Hall stands at intersection of four sunken 'views'.
Extensive formal gardens by Kingsmill Eyre made 1715-20, replaced in 19th century with shrubbery and simplified in 20th century.
(S1) and (S2).
E. Rose (NLA) 4 March 1994.

(S3) in file.

See (S4) for various park features now abandoned.

12 July 1994. NLA aerial photography.
Photographs TF 7929/AC - AE show some form of cropmarks. These in general form very regular 'square' shapes. Possibly due to recent drainage/land improvement in area. Alternatively they could be a pre-park feature.
Photographs TF 7928/ADU - ADZ show cropmarks of a possible trackway/hollow way (possibly related to NHER 28476 to south of Houghton Hall).
H. Clare (NLA) 21 February 2001.

(S5) describes project to re-survey the estate inspired by Joseph Hill's late eighteenth century survey. Commissioned to mark the millenium.
A. Yardy (HES), 10 August 2011.

Monument Types

  • AVENUE (LANDSCAPE FEATURE) (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • FORMAL GARDEN (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • HA HA (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • LANDSCAPE PARK (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • TREE CLUMP (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status

  • Registered Park or Garden
  • Higher Level Stewardship

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 47-59.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1995. TF7829/E - L; TF7929/AM - AQ; TF7928/AGB - AGJ.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1996. TF7928/AEJ - AEZ; TF7928/AFA - AFU.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1994. TF 7929AC - AL; TF 7928ADU - AEH; TF 7828T - W.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1997. TF 7928AGS, AGX - AHF.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1997. TF 7927H; TF 7828Q - S, X - Y; TF 7928ADK - ADT, AGT - AGW.
---Monograph: Pevsner, N and Wilson, W. 1999. Norfolk 2: North-West and South. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. pp 434-435.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1998. Marquess looks forward to looking back. 20 November.
<S1>Designation: English Heritage. Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England..
<S2>Unpublished Document: Norfolk County Council. [unknown]. Inventory of Historic Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in Norfolk..
<S3>Unpublished Document: Williamson, T. (UEA). Houghton survey notes.
<S4>Aerial Photograph: TF 7828/K-L, TF 7928/ACG-K.
<S5>Article in Serial: D. Cholmondeley. 2002. Survey the Fullness of Time. Country Life.

Related records

3522Parent of: Bronze Age round barrow or post medieval garden feature, Houghton Park (Monument)
15660Parent of: Houghton Well, Water House, Houghton Park (Monument)
3523Parent of: Icehouse, Houghton Park (Building)
44247Parent of: Kitchen garden, Houghton Park (Building)
12564Parent of: Medieval cross, Houghton Park (Monument)
44203Parent of: North Lodge, Houghton Park (Building)
3542Parent of: Post medieval mounds and tree clumps, Houghton Park (Monument)
3543Parent of: Site of deserted medieval village of Houghton (Monument)
3549Parent of: St Martin's Church, Houghton (Building)
3548Parent of: Water House or Water Tower, Houghton Park (Building)
44167Parent of: West Lodge, Houghton Hall (Building)
3546Part of: Houghton Hall (Building)

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