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HER Number: 3312
Record Type: Monument
Name: Site of Langley Palace Royal Hunting Lodge

Designations

  • Scheduled Monument () 1008495: Site of Langley Palace royal hunting lodge, an associated enclosure and later garden earthworks at Langley Farm
Grid Reference: SP 295 156
Parish:LEAFIELD, WEST OXFORDSHIRE, OXFORDSHIRE

Monument Type(s):

Summary

Monument includes the site of Langley Royal Hunting Lodge with associated bank, an earlier oval enclosure, part of an associated avenue, and the earthwork remains of a formal garden, as well as the remains of a manor and part of a Deserted Medieval Village, both of which were built over when the hunting lodge was constructed.

Associated Monuments

  • None
  • Associated Finds:

  • None
  • Description

    1) The site lies SW of Leafield Barrow motte and immediately S of the Marconi signal station. The royal hunting lodge survives in part as a building incorporated into the fabric of the present Grade II* Listed farmhouse; the two-storey bay window of the original hall, for instance, is still visible.The site of the lodge is further defined by a bank to the W and N, and originally to the E, delimiting an area some 35m wide and 75m long. This earthwork is thought to date to a major phase of rebuilding. It provided a raised walkway, up to 12m across and possibly accessible via a bridge from the first floor of the lodge, from which the surrounding formal gardens could have been viewed.
    Outside the bank to the N and W are the earthwork remains of formal gardens, surviving as a series of low banks and depressions up to 5m wide and 0.5m high. Those to the W are arranged along an avenue which is shown as the main access to the site on a map of 1855. This avenue continues as a slight earthwork for c.90m beyond the gardens remains.
    The core of the site is included within an oval enclosure originally defined by a bank and ditch. To the S, the line of the earthworks is buried beneath the modern road line. Elsewhere the bank can be traced in places up to 1m high and 3m wide and the ditch, largely infilled but surviving as a buried feature, as shallow depressions up to a 0.2m deep and 3m wide. This oval enclosure, measuring c.200m E-W by c.140m N-S, may have originally defended the lodge but could also date back to the earlier manor which existed on the site.
    From documentary records it is known that the early manor and associated village were deserted some time after 1450. In 1478 the manor passed into crown ownership and Henry VII had a royal hunting lodge built on the site. His initials can be seen carved on the soffit of the bay window in the present farmhouse, along with Tudor rose. Further sculptured masonry from the site can be seen incorporated in the later cottages c.500m to the SE. The site continued to be used by the court until 1614 and remains in crown ownership. The present farmhouse was rebuilt in 1858, incorporating many elements of the earlier structures which it replaced.
    Excluded from the scheduling are the present farm buildings, including the Grade II* Listed farmhouse, the farmyard surface, the road surface, the post and wire boundary fences, the garden walls and the disused reservoir N of the farmhouse, although the ground beneath all of the above features is included.
    Monument includes the site of Langley Palace royal hunting lodge with associated bank, an earlier oval enclosure, part of an associated avenue, and the earthwork remains of a formal garden. It also includes the remains of a manor and part of a DMV, both of which were built over when the hunting lodge was constructed.
    2) Part of the enclosing bank and ditch round the former hunting lodge (PRN 11217). NW of this earthwork are the remains of a DMV - earthworks in pasture c.2' high, suggestion of a street with crofts off it.
    3) Village deserted some time between 1450-1700. Poor quality earthworks remain (1963).
    6) Monument includes the site of Langley Royal Hunting Lodge with associated bank, an earlier oval enclosure, part of an associated avenue, and the earthwork remains of a formal garden. It also includes the remains of a manor and part of a Deserted Medieval Village, both of which were built over when the hunting lodge was constructed
    8) OS card is separate as hard copy; DRF has copy of another OS card (? SP21 NE 18) for a pillow mound within the Langley palace site. This mound is visible on OS base map (GIS layer). Around the N and W sides of the farmhouse are the remains of a substantial enclosure bank 16m wide and up to 1.6m high externally and 0.5m internally, with in parts a vestigial outer ditch. Traces of stone around the inner edge of the bank suggest some form of revetment or walling. The modern farm buildings have obliterated the earthwork around the S and E sides and no trace of an entrance remains.
    In the level pasture field to the NW centred at SP2944 1555 are a series of low banks up to 0.4m high and 4m wide; they appear to form a terraced system of small fields interspaced with holloways. Nowhere is there evidence of building platforms, walling or medieval habitation debris. Within this system at SP 2948 1554 lie two apparently contemporary pillow mounds 21m long, 5m wide and 0.5m high with lateral ditches. The whole of the disturbed ground which includes some ridge and furrow is contained within a crescentric scarp up to 0.8m high . Whether these fields are contemporary with the early hunting lodge or were associated with the site of Little Langley DMV and destroyed by later farming activities remains obscure.

    All the DRF information has been scanned and will be linked to this PRN; the original sheets have been checked and discarded by SVL, 01.12/14.


    <1> English Heritage, Scheduled Ancient Monuments Record, SM 21805 (Scheduling record). SOX283.


    <2> Field Notes/Field Visit, C J Bond, J Rhodes, J Campbell, 1975 (Unpublished document). SOX261.


    <3> Allison, Beresford & Hurst, 1965, Deserted Villages of Oxfordshire, (1965) p.40 (Monograph). SOX317.


    <4> General reference, Beresford: Lost Villages of England (Lutterworth, 1954) p.381 (Bibliographic reference). SOX373.


    <5> Medieval Village Research Group, Good RAF Vertical AP - CPE/UK/1897, taken 12.12.46 (Serial). SOX336.


    <6> MPP Documents for Oxfordshire, MPP documentation in DRF (Index). SOX259.


    <7> Aerial Photographs, SP 2915 A-B (Photograph). SOX295.


    <8> OS Record Card, SP 21 NE 15 + SP 21 NE 18 ? (Index). SOX273.


    <9> Berks Archaeological Journal, Vol 60 (1962) pp.92-7. See CAS Lib: Vale 32 (Serial). SOX390.


    <10> Medieval Village Research Group (Serial). SOX336.

    Sources

    <1>English Heritage. Scheduled Ancient Monuments Record. SM 21805. [Scheduling record / SOX283]
    <2>Field Notes/Field Visit. C J Bond, J Rhodes, J Campbell, 1975. [Unpublished document / SOX261]
    <3>Allison, Beresford & Hurst. 1965. Deserted Villages of Oxfordshire. (1965) p.40. [Monograph / SOX317]
    <4>General reference. Beresford: Lost Villages of England (Lutterworth, 1954) p.381. [Bibliographic reference / SOX373]
    <5>Medieval Village Research Group. Good RAF Vertical AP - CPE/UK/1897, taken 12.12.46. [Serial / SOX336]
    <6>MPP Documents for Oxfordshire. MPP documentation in DRF. [Index / SOX259]
    <7>Aerial Photographs. SP 2915 A-B. [Photograph / SOX295]
    <8>OS Record Card. SP 21 NE 15 + SP 21 NE 18 ?. [Index / SOX273]
    <9>Berks Archaeological Journal. Vol 60 (1962) pp.92-7. See CAS Lib: Vale 32. [Serial / SOX390]
    <10>Medieval Village Research Group. [Serial / SOX336]