Record Details

NHER Number:7290
Type of record:Monument
Name:Medieval moated site of Kirkham's manor house


This is the medieval moated site of Kirkham's manor house, which was probably occupied from the 12th to the 15th centuries. The moat is now dry and a lengths of medieval flint and brick wall is visible above ground. Medieval tiles and bricks have been found on the island. Medieval account rolls dating from the 14th and 15th century describe the manorial complex in detail, including the bridge across the moat, and the ancillary buildings associated with the manor house. An outer court is mentioned in an early 16th century document, and a possible outer enclosure is visible as an earthwork on aerial photographs taken in 1946. The earthworks of this enclosure have now been destroyed.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TF 9073 1256
Map Sheet:TF91SW

Full description

Moat (Ordnance Survey).
Ditches are very deep, and wide in places, though overgrown. Most of interior is impenetrable, but the west side is open, revealing several mounds, probably covering foundations. In northwest corner is a very large rectangular ?pond cuts into centre. Planting round outside of ditches seems like intentional hedges gone wild.
1 medieval brick found lying on track nearby.
Visited by E. Rose (NAU) 7 October 1976.

(S1) and (S2) shows outer enclosures now bulldozed.
A. Rogerson (NAU) 17 September 1982.

(S1) and (S2) shows possible outer enclosures of moat to north, and at west what could be a second, connected moat, which is unusual. Now bulldozed but earthworks in 1946.
See NHER 20829.
E. Rose (NAU) 13 February 1985.

November 1986.
Large part of northwest area mechanically excavated to form pond.

Visited 7 December 1986.
Some brick and tile collected (called context 1).
A. Rogerson (NAU)

13 March 1987.
Disturbance plotted by A. Rogerson at 1:1250 for Fransham Survey.
Pond, presumably an original feature, redug and shape altered. Spoil, both peat and clay, dumped around new pond over
new ponds edges, part of island and part of west arm of moat. Rapid look at island showed that most of south half has dense mortar and pegtile spread with some brick and flint wall just above ground, 0.5m wide, 4m long, aligned north to south. Near edge of moat so perhaps revetment. Fragment of glazed plain floor tile near wall, medieval base sherd near centre.
See (S3) for NHER 20829, Field L169.
Identified by and information from A. Rogerson (NAU)
E. Rose (NAU) 5 August 1987.

See (S4) in file.
A. Rogerson (NLA), 16 September 2002.

(S4) examines a series of medieval accounts dating from 1373 to 1443, which mention various buildings that were part of the manorial complex, including a blacksmiths, a dovecote, a pigsty, a timber framed barn, stables, a kiln, a malthouse, a buttery and guest accomodation. The manor was leased out from the mid 15th century, which may be when decline set in.
See (S4).
S. Spooner (NLA) 9 December 2005

Monument Types

  • MANOR (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • MOAT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • WALL (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Associated Finds

  • BRICK (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • FLOOR TILE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Protected Status

  • Management Statement

Sources and further reading

---*Fieldwork: Fransham Survey. L169. AJGR.
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Record Card: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Medieval. Fransham, Little.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
<S1>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1944-1950. Norfolk Air Photo Library: RAF National Air Survey Vertical Collection. TF9012.
<S2>Oblique Aerial Photograph: Various. ? - 2020. Norfolk Air Photo Library: Oblique Collection. TF9012/A-D, G-H.
<S3>Archive: Fransham Field Walking Boxfile.
<S4>Unpublished Document: Rogerson, A. 2002. SMR 7290 [Documentary Survey].

Related records - none

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