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Historic England Research Records

Beaurepaire Manor House

Hob Uid: 24607
Location :
County Durham
Bearpark
Grid Ref : NZ2428943919
Summary : Medieval grange and manor complex founded between 1244-58, rebuilt in 1346. By the end of the 14th century it had developed into an E-plan house. By the middle of the 17th century it was in a poor state of repair, and by 1787 was ruinous. The remains consist of the ruined walls of a U-shaped building which following excavation also have the foundations of the earlier E-shaped building, and the earthworks of other buildings to the North. There were probably associated fishponds.
More information : NZ 244 439 Bear Park (NR) (remains of) (NAT)
Chapel (NR) (in ruins) (NAT)
NZ 2446 4378 Old Ponds (NAT) (1)

The remains of the prior's house and chapel of Beaurepaire or Bear park, built by Prior Bertram (1244-58), later destroyed by the Scots and re-built circa 1346. Hutchinson's detailed account of the remains include the chapel, the probable refectory adjoining on the west and the alleged dormitory on the north. Other remains were too confused to determine their significance. Three chapels are mentioned at Bearpark; St Edmund, St Catherine and St John in the park. (see NZ 24 SW 8). (2)

The remains consist of a `U' shaped building with surviving walls, 1.2 m wide on average, and from ground level to circa 6 m high. To the north are grass covered banks overlying hidden foundations; some of which are surveyable. Survey plan at 1:1056 scale. (See NZ 24 SW 8 for associated deer park). (3)

Remains visible on air photographs. (4)

The remains at NZ 2431 4390 are basically as described and surveyed
by authority 3.

Published survey 1:2500 revised.

The grass covered slopes to the N (centred at NZ 2428 4393) are obviously further remains but these are less easily discernible now.

Published survey 1:2500 correct.

The area of the remains of the possible fishponds (centred NZ 2446 4378) has been ploughed and there is no trace of them. (5)

Beaupaire Manor House. Ruins of manor-house of Prior of Durham, 13 -
16th centuries. Grade II. (6)

Survey of the post-Medieval farms of Bear Park. (7)

Existing survey revised by RCHME during a project on scheduled monuments in County Durham.

The estate of Beaupaire of some 1300 acres was created between about 1195 to 1311 through a series of grants of land to the Prior and convent of Durham. The Prior's residence was first built by Prior Bertram de Middleton in 1258 and comprised living quarters and a chapel. It was probably rebuilt by Prior Fossour after its destruction in 1346; an inventory of 1464 describes the buildings as containing a chapel, outer and inner chambers, hall, buttery and kitchen. In its final form, which may have been achieved in the 14th century under Prior Fossour, it was an E-plan mansion with adjacent gardens, courtyards and buildings. By 1684 the residence was in a poor state, and a century later, in 1787, it was in ruins. Excavation of the site commenced in 1980 and continued until 1984; this revealed the E-plan mansion dated from 1258 to the mid-14th century, with minor 16th century modifications (8a-8e).

The excavators produced a plan of the earthworks to the north, south and east of the mansion (8b). The E-plan house, situated on the upper edge of the river cliff of the River Browney, has been consolidated and left exposed; it is in the care of Durham City Council and together with the earthworks to the north, representing the remains of the further buildings and courtyards, has been fenced off. The field to the east is ploughed regularly, and those earthworks shown on the plan (8b) are reduced to vague swellings and depressions. Those depressions and terraces to the south of the excavated house, shown on Clack's plan (8b) occupy the steep slopes of the river cliff. There are problems over the interpretation of this area; it is clear that there has been considerable activity here and some of this is probably contemporary with the 13-14th century house. However, some quarrying has taken place and some of the channels may have been drainage from the field above. Much of what is shown on the plan is natural or a modification of the natural. The relationship of this series of enigmatic features to each other, and their function, may only be recoverable by a detailed large scale plan. (8)

NZ 243 439. Grange and chapel, Bearpark Farm. Scheduled No DU/62. (9)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 6" 1st Edition map 1861
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Source Number : 2
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Hutchinson, W, 1787. History of Durham 2 (335-38, illust)
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Source Number : 8c
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Clack, P A G, 1983. Excavations at Beaupaire, Durham. Archaeol Reports 1982, Durham & Newcastle Univs (71-74)
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Source Number : 8d
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Clack, P A G, 1984. Excavations at Beaupaire, Durham. Archaeol Reports 1983, Durham & Newcastle Univs (81-84)
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Source Number : 8e
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Clack, P A G, 1985. Excavations at Beaupaire, Durham. Archaeol Reports 1984, Durham & Newcastle Univs (69-72)
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Source Number : 9
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : English Heritage SAM List Durham March 1994 7
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Source : Bearpark/ink survey
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Source Number : 3
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 JHOstridge/13-AUG-1954/OS Archaeology Division Field Investigator
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Source Number : 4
Source : Aerial photograph
Source details : RAF F22/58/2654 0128-30 9.12.58
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Source Number : 5
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F2 ISSainsbury/04-FEB-1980/OS Archaeology Division field Investigator
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Source Number : 6
Source : List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest
Source details : DOE (Listed Buildings) City of Durham 14-JAN-1988 (5)
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Source Number : 7
Source : Council for British Archaeology Group 3: Archaeological newsbulletin
Source details : L J Edwards
Page(s) : Dec-15
Figs. :
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Vol(s) : 4, 1985
Source Number : 8
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Keith Blood/06-AUG-1991/RCHME: Durham SAMs Project
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Source Number : 8a
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Clack, P A G, 1981. Excavations at Beau Repaire (Bearpark) Durham. Archaeol Reports 1980, Durham & Newcastle Univs (54-57)
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Source Number : 8b
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Clack, P A G, 1982. Excavations at Beaupaire, Durham. Archaeol Reports 1981, Durham & Newcastle Univs (59-61)
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Founded between 1244-58
Monument End Date : 1258
Monument Start Date : 1244
Monument Type : Chapel, Monastic Dwelling, Building, Courtyard, Fishpond, Benedictine Grange, Manor House
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit, Earthwork, Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Rebuilt in 1346
Monument End Date : 1346
Monument Start Date : 1346
Monument Type : Monastic Dwelling, Benedictine Grange, Chapel
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit, Ruined Building
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : Documented as ruinous
Monument End Date : 1787
Monument Start Date : 1787
Monument Type : Monastic Dwelling, Benedictine Grange, Chapel
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit, Ruined Building

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Listed Building List Entry Legacy Uid
External Cross Reference Number : 109995
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : DU 62
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : NZ 24 SW 1
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 24501
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 24622
Relationship type :

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON NZ 24 SW 1
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1954-08-13
End Date : 1954-08-13
Associated Activities : Primary, BEAUREPAIRE/BEARPARK
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1964-01-01
End Date : 1964-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, BEAUREPAIRE/BEARPARK
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1980-01-01
End Date : 1984-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON NZ 24 SW 1
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1980-02-04
End Date : 1980-02-04
Associated Activities : Primary, RCHME: DURHAM SAMS PROJECT
Activity type : MEASURED SURVEY
Start Date : 1991-06-01
End Date : 1991-12-01