11. BUCKDEN (C.e.).
(O.S. 6 in. (a)XXI N.E., (b)XXI S.E.)
Buckden is a parish and village, 4 m. S.W. of
Huntingdon. The Church, the Palace, the Manor
House and the Lion Hotel are the principal monuments. The Bishops of Lincoln owned a manor at
Buckden since before the Domesday Survey and
most, if not all, of them from St. Hugh of Avalon
(1186–1203) down to John Kaye (1827–53) resided
here; seven bishops, including Robert Grosseteste,
died at the palace.
b(1). Parish Church of St. Mary stands in the
village. The walls are of rubble with some pebbles
and ironstone; the dressings are of Barnack and
other freestone and the roofs are covered with lead.
The earliest remaining feature of the church is the
early 13th-century S. doorway, but this is not in
situ. The Chancel was re-built at the end of the
13th century. Perhaps at the end of the 14th
century, there may have been a scheme for widening the whole church by some 3 ft. towards the
N.; the N.E. buttress of the chancel was set to the
N. of the actual building and the West Tower was
set out well to the N. of the axial line of the church.
It is possible that the scheme was still under consideration when the S. arcade and South Aisle
were built early in the 15th century, but it had
evidently been abandoned when the N. arcade,
North Aisle and chancel-arch were built shortly
afterwards; the W. tower was carried up about
the same time and the clearstorey added; later in
the century the chancel-walls were re-built above the
string-course and heightened and the South Porch
added. The church was repaired in 1649 and 1665,
the dates on the roofs, and 18th-century buttresses
were added to the N. aisle, probably to counteract
a settlement caused by the adjoining Palace moat.
The church was restored in the 19th century and in
1910, and the North Vestry, on the site of an older
building, and the Organ Chamber are modern.
The nave is a good example of 15th-century work,
the roofs and S. porch being also of interest. Among
the fittings the glass is noteworthy.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (40¼ ft.
by 18½ ft.) has a late 15th-century E. window of
five cinque-foiled and transomed lights in a four-centred head with a re-used 14th-century label.
The extension of the E. wall to the N. of the
chancel probably formed part of the E. wall of a
former vestry. In the N. wall is a late 15th-century
window of three lights, similar to the E. window and
now blocked below the transom; further W. is a
modern opening to the organ-chamber and E. of
the window is a late 13th-century doorway, with
moulded jambs and two-centred arch. In the S.
wall are three windows uniform with that in the N.
wall but not partly blocked; below the westernmost window is a doorway, probably of late 13th-century date, with a re-set head; it has moulded
and shafted jambs and moulded segmental-pointed arch. The 15th-century chancel-arch is
two-centred and of two moulded orders, with a
moulded label; the outer order is continued down
the responds and the inner order springs from
attached shafts with moulded capitals and bases.
Buckden, the Parish Church of St Mary.
The Nave (54¼ ft. by 19¼ ft.) has early 15th-century N. and S. arcades each of five bays with two-centred arches of two moulded orders, similar to the
chancel-arch, and with moulded labels having
stops carved with heads, grotesques and one angel;
the moulded piers have each four attached shafts
with moulded capitals and bases; the responds are
similar to those of the chancel-arch. Across the
S.E. angle of the nave is the late 15th-century
upper doorway to the rood-loft staircase, partly
cut into the voussoirs of the chancel-arch and having
a segmental head. The embattled 15th-century
clearstorey has on each side five windows, each of
three cinque-foiled lights in a four-centred head
with a moulded label.
The North Aisle (10 ft. wide) is of the 15th
century and has an embattled parapet. In the E.
wall is a window of three cinque-foiled lights in a
four-centred head with moulded reveals and label;
it now opens into the organ-chamber. In the N.
wall are four windows similar to that in the E. wall;
the blocked N. doorway has a four-centred head
and a moulded label. In the W. wall is a window
similar to those in the N. wall.
The South Aisle (10¼ ft. wide) is of the 15th
century and has an embattled parapet. In the E.
wall is a window of three cinque-foiled lights, with
vertical tracery in a four-centred head, with
moulded reveals and label; N. of the window is
the lower doorway to the rood-loft staircase; it
has moulded jambs and four-centred arch in a
square head. In the S. wall are four windows each
of three cinque-foiled and transomed lights in a
four-centred head with moulded reveals and label;
the re-set early 13th-century S. doorway (Plate
22) has a two-centred arch of two moulded
orders; the jambs have each one free and one
attached shaft with foliated capitals, moulded
abaci and bases; further W. is the doorway to
the porch-staircase; it has chamfered jambs and
moulded four-centred head. In the W. wall is a
window similar to that in the E. wall.
The West Tower (about 14¼ ft. square) is mainly
of the 15th century and of three stages (Plate
23), with a moulded plinth and an embattled
parapet with four carved gargoyles and a
series of grotesque faces on the parapet string-course. The two-centred tower-arch is of three
chamfered orders, the two outer continuous
and the inner order springing from attached
shafts, with moulded capitals and bases; S. of
the arch, on the E. face, a buttress projects
into the nave; the similar buttress on the N. is
now incorporated in the W. respond of the N.
arcade. The much restored W. window is of three
cinque-foiled lights with vertical tracery in a four-centred head, with moulded reveals and label with
head-stops; the W. doorway has jambs and two-centred arch of two moulded orders, with a moulded
label. The second stage has in the W. wall a window
of two cinque-foiled and transomed lights with
vertical tracery in a four-centred head, with
moulded reveals and label and grotesque stops.
The bell-chamber has in each wall a pair of windows,
each of two trefoiled and transomed lights with a
quatrefoil in a four-centred head, with a moulded
label and grotesque stops. The 15th-century
octagonal spire is ashlar-faced and rises from
within the parapet. It has three tiers of four spire-lights, all towards the cardinal points; the windows of the two lower tiers are each of two trefoiled
lights with a quatrefoil in a gabled head; the
windows of the upper tier are each of one trefoiled
light in a gabled head.
The South Porch (Plate 22) is of the 15th century
and of two storeys, with a moulded plinth and
embattled parapet; the parapet-string is carved
with various figures—a monkey, muzzled bear, lion,
lamb, two pairs of beasts, fox stalking geese, dogs
chasing rabbit (?), etc.; the parapet on the S. face
has three ranges of running cusped panelling,
crocketed pinnacles at the angles and the stump of a
pinnacle at the apex. The plinth has a series of
quatre-foiled panels, each enclosing a carved flower.
The four-centred outer archway is of two moulded
orders with a crocketed and finialed label and
angel-stops; the outer order is continuous and
the inner springs from attached shafts, with
moulded capitals and bases. The upper room has
a window of three cinque-foiled lights in a four-centred head, with moulded reveals and label
with crockets and stops carved with a lion and two
faces respectively, the latter cut down and not
in situ. The side walls of the lower storey have
each a window of two cinque-foiled lights in a
four-centred head with a moulded label; these
windows are set in internal recesses, with four-centred heads. The vault (Plate 22) of the
lower storey is of clunch and has moulded
diagonal, ridge, wall and subsidiary ribs springing
from plain shafts in the angles; the main intersection has a large boss (Plate 133) carved
with an 'Assumption of the Virgin'; the
subsidiary bosses are carved with a double rose
and foliage. The stair-turret is faced with ashlar
and has a small quatre-foiled opening on the S.
The Roof of the chancel is of late 15th-century
date, repaired in 1665; it is low-pitched and of
three bays with moulded main timbers; the
tie-beams have curved braces springing from short
shafts on the face of the wall-posts; there is a
17th-century carved boss in the middle of each
bay and half-bosses, against the trusses; two
bosses have flowers and a third the inscription
R.W. 1665; at the feet of the intermediate
principals are large figures of angels with spread
wings, two holding books; the three eastern
trusses rest on stone corbels carved with angels
holding scrolls or blank shields. The 15th-century
roof of the nave is low-pitched and of five bays;
it was repaired in 1649; the four original free
trusses have curved and moulded principals forming
a four-centred arch and have a carved boss on
the apex-post of each pair; they spring from
shafted wall-posts standing on stone corbels
carved with angels holding scrolls and shields;
four shields bear a cross moline; the E. and W.
trusses are of different form and have each an
embattled tie-beam with curved braces above and
the E. truss has curved braces below it in addition;
the same truss has two small figures on the wall-posts; in the middle of the middle bay is an
inserted 17th-century truss having a collar with
curved braces and traceried spandrels; it rests
on wall-posts, enriched with fluted pilasters
standing on pedestals; at the feet of the intermediate principals, and no doubt taking the places
of the former angels, are flat panelled timbers
of the 17th century, all carved with conventional
foliage except two which are carved with male
and female heads in quatrefoils; the wall-plates
are moulded and on the N. wall-plate is the
inscription "I.I. C.P. ANNO 1649". The flat
pent-roof of the N. aisle is of the 15th century
and of five bays, with moulded main timbers;
the principals have curved braces on the N. side
with traceried spandrels and springing from carved
stone corbels, chiefly grotesques. The 15th-century roof of the S. aisle is generally similar to
that over the N. aisle but the braces have plain
spandrels and against the wall-posts are set carved
figures, the eastern perhaps St. Stephen and the
other four all wearing mitres; at the feet of the
intermediate principals are figures of angels,
holding a lute, viol, tabor, dulcimer and hurdygurdy respectively; the wall-posts stand on stone
corbels carved with grotesque heads. The 15th-century roof of the upper storey of the porch has
plain tie-beams and rafters.
Fittings—Bells: five; 1st probably by Thomas
Bullisdon, early 16th-century, and inscribed
"Sc/?/a Katherina Ora Pro Nobis"; 4th by Miles
Graie, 1654; 5th by William Haulsey, 1627.
Communion Table: In S. aisle—modern table
incorporating five turned and twisted baluster-legs and shaped brackets, possibly late 17th-century.
Doors: In S. aisle—in doorway to rood stair-turret, of oak with moulded frame and ribs planted
on, late 15th-century; in S. doorway, of battens
on trellis-framing with moulded frame and ribs
planted on outer face, forming five panels, formerly
with traceried heads all now missing but with
outlines showing and background painted green,
15th-century. In doorway to stairs to upper
storey of porch, of battens with hollow-chamfered
frame and ribs planted on, late 15th-century;
similar doorway at head of stairs, with some ribs
missing. Font: octagonal bowl, each face with
a quatre-foiled panel enclosing a blank shield,
splayed under side, 15th-century, stem modern.
Glass: In S. aisle—in tracery of E. window,
probably a coronation of the Virgin, but only
lower part of Virgin's figure left and head of
Christ missing, both figures seated on thrones
and that of Christ with orb in left hand and
right hand raised in blessing; on either side, figures
of seraphim, four in all, holding scrolls with the
antiphon "Regina celi letare a[lleluia] quia quem
meruisti portare a[lleluia] resurrexit sicut dixit
a[lleluia ora pro] nobis [Deum alleluia]", fourth
figure mostly destroyed and others damaged;
above, three spandrel-pieces with oak-leaves; in
tracery of W. window, an Annunciation, but only
figure of the Virgin remains, kneeling at desk and
with lily-pot behind; on either side, figures of
seraphim as in E. window, and all except one
much damaged, holding scrolls with the antiphon
"Sancta Maria [virgo mater intercede pro]
toto mundo quia genuisti regem orbis"; one
oak-leaf spandrel above, all late 15th-century
and in situ. Locker: In N. aisle—in E. wall,
small rectangular recess with rebated reveals,
15th-century. Monuments and Floor-slab. Monuments: In chancel—on N. wall, (1) to Thomas
Barlow, S.T.P., Provost of Queen's Oxon, Bodley's
Librarian, Archdeacon of Oxford, Lady Margaret
Professor of Theology, Bishop "although unworthy" of Lincoln, 1691, erected by William
Barlow, freestone and black marble wall-monument (Plate 25), with inscribed tablet in middle,
cherub-heads with pendants of flowers and drapery
at sides, cornice with urn and two cartouches-of-arms; plain panelled vase with three shields-of-arms and a mitre. In churchyard—E. of chancel,
(2) to Ann (Green), wife of Nathanel Disbrough,
1708–9, head-stone with skull and hour-glass;
S.E. of chancel, (3) to . . . 1671 or 1691, round
head-stone; S. of S. aisle—(4) table-tomb with
cusped panelling, enclosing blank shields, on sides
and ends, coped slab, late 15th- or early 16th-century; S. of porch, (5) to Mary, daughter of
Robart Norwood, 1680–81, head-stone with hourglass, cross-bones and roses; (6) possibly to wife of
same, similar head-stone with laudatory inscription; name and date, if any, buried. Floor-slab: In
chancel—to Robert Sanderson, Bishop of Lincoln,
1662–3, slab of touch with shield-of-arms (Plate
127). Niches: In N. aisle—on E. wall, shallow
recess, with moulded jambs, trefoiled ogee head and
moulded label with crockets and finial, late 15th-century. In S. aisle—in E. wall above doorway
to rood stair-turret, similar recess but with cinque-foiled head, late 15th-century. On S. porch—over
outer archway, with moulded base, cinque-foiled and
gabled head with crockets and angels at base of
gable, vaulted soffit with rose in middle, late 15th-century. Panelling: In chancel—incorporated
in modern desks, eight oak panels (Plate 24)
with carved figure-subjects as follows—(a) the
Betrayal; (b) the Crucifixion; (c) the Bearing of
the Cross; (d) the Ecce Homo; (e) the Crowning
with Thorns; (f) the Agony in the Garden;
(g) the Flagellation; (h) Pilate washing his hands;
each panel with side pilasters, trefoiled head and
foliage and shell enrichment, 16th-century, foreign.
Piscinae: In chancel—with two-centred arch of
two moulded orders, the outer carried on shafts
with moulded capitals and bases and the inner
continued down to stops and with restored trefoiled
cusping, restored moulded label, sex-foiled drain,
c. 1300. In N. aisle—in E. wall, shallow recess
with two-centred head, broken fluted drain in
projecting shelf, supported by shaft, with upper
part broken away but retaining moulded base,
15th-century. In S. aisle—in S. wall, rough recess
with arched back, part of rebated E. jamb,
broken round drain, 15th-century, much altered.
Plate: includes cup of 1607 and cup and stand-paten of 1679, given by William Wake, Archbishop
of Canterbury 1716. Pulpit: (Plate 153) of
oak, semi-octagonal, each face with two ranges of
arcaded panels, richly carved, moulded and carved
cornice, carved styles and moulded middle rail,
early 17th-century, stem and base modern, old
carving incorporated in modern posts to stairs.
Sedilia: In chancel—three stepped bays, with
attached shafts to jambs, and free shafts between
bays all with moulded capitals and bases, moulded
two-centred arches with restored labels, details as
piscina, c. 1300. Miscellanea: In N. aisle—set
in E. wall, fragment of gable-cross and portion of
a(2). At Top Farm, 1 m. N.W. of the church.
b(3). W. of Shooter's Hollow and 1½ m. W.S.W.
of the church.
b(4). Buckden Palace, tower, gatehouses, foundations and moat, N. of the church. The manor
belonged to the Bishops of Lincoln at the time of
the Domesday Survey but it is uncertain when
first a house was built on the site. Bishop Hugh
de Wells (1209–35) is said to have built or re-built
a manor house at Buckden and Bishop Robert
Grosseteste (1235–54) is credited with building
the great hall. The buildings were burnt in 1291
but the extent of the damage does not appear.
To the 13th century would appear to belong the
foundations of the Great Chamber, the Chapel and
parts of the Great Hall. An extensive rebuilding
of the palace took place under Bishops Thomas
Rotherham (1472–80) and John Russell (1480–94);
the former, according to Leland, built the Great
Tower and restored the Great Hall; the Great
Tower was probably finished by Bishop Russell,
whose arms formerly appeared on the woodwork,
and the same bishop built the Inner and Outer Gate-houses and the enclosure walls. Considerable repairs were made to the buildings by Bishop John
Williams (1621–42) who appears to have re-built
and shortened the Chapel and repaired the cloister.
Under the Commonwealth a large part of the
house including the great Hall was demolished,
but the house was restored on a smaller scale by
Bishop Robert Sanderson (1660–63), the great
Hall, not being re-built. In 1839 about half the
main building and part of the gatehouse-range
were demolished and the great tower dismantled.
The Great Chamber, Chapel and adjoining buildings
were pulled down in 1871, when the modern house
was erected and the moat was filled in at the same
The existing remains are handsome examples of
late 15th-century brickwork.
The Palace, when complete, consisted of an inner
walled and moated enclosure, containing the main
buildings of the house and entered by the Inner
Gatehouse on the W. side, and an outer walled
enclosure on the W., entered by the Outer Gate-house and containing various outbuildings. Of the
main structure of the house only the Great Tower
The Great Tower (50½ ft. by 27 ft. externally) is
of late 15th-century date and of three storeys
(Plates 23 and 26) with a basement and
octagonal turrets at the angles rising above the
main parapet. The walls are of red brick with
stone dressings and the storeys are divided by
moulded string-courses; the tower is finished
with a chamfered plinth and embattled parapet.
The building has been entirely gutted and the
vaulting of the basement removed; it formerly
contained some twelve rooms including the
'parlour' and the 'King's Chamber' above it.
The windows are placed unsymmetrically, and
are of one, two, or three lights; those of the ground
and first floors have cinque-foiled lights in square
heads with moulded labels; one window in the S.
wall, however, has trefoiled lights. The windows
of the second floor have plain square-headed lights
without labels and the windows lighting the
basement are of similar character. The N. face of
the tower has two elaborate designs of black brick
diapering each consisting of lozenges surmounted
by a cross. The doorway to the basement has a
three-centred internal head of two chamfered
orders and a segmental rear-arch on the outer face
of the wall; between the two, the head rakes
steeply downwards; the doorway to the ground-floor has moulded stone jambs, four-centred arch
and label; the threshold is about 5 ft. above
the existing ground-level. The S. face of the
tower is partly obscured by ivy; it has a projecting chimney-stack, partly restored; in a recess
in the modern brickwork is an old cruciform
loop. Against the S.E. turret is an octagonal
chimney-stack with concave faces. The W. end of
the tower has a cross in brick diapering, standing on
a sloping base. The N.W. and S.W. turrets have
diaper-work, the S.W. turret having a cross on a
Interior—The N.E. and N.W. turrets contained
staircases, but that in the N.E. turret only
remains; it has remains of a stone hand-rail sunk
in the wall, moulded base to the newel and a
moulded parapet at the top. The S.E. turret
contained a series of garde-robes. The basement,
now filled in with earth, except a portion at the E.
end, was vaulted in brick, from N. to S. In
the N. wall is a wide recess with a three-centred
arch. The ground-floor has remains of a cross-wall, partly blocking the S.E. window and with
one jamb of a stone doorway. In the middle of
the S. wall is a stone fireplace with moulded jambs
and flat four-centred arch in a square head. The
first floor has in the S. wall a 17th-century fireplace
with moulded jambs and head and rounded angles;
at the back is part of a blocked brick arch, presumably of earlier date. The second storey has in
the same wall a fireplace with chamfered jambs
and three-centred arch of plastered brick; further
W. are remains of another fireplace. The turrets
communicate with the tower at the various levels
by doorways with four-centred heads, some
having moulded jambs and arches.
The Foundations of the main block of the palace,
adjoin the tower on the N.E. They appear to have
originally formed three sides, the E., N. and S. of a
courtyard, the Great Hall being on the N., the
Chapel on the E. and the Great Chamber on the W.
After the destruction of the Great Hall in the 17th
century a range seems to have been built across its
S. end and the courtyard was largely, if not entirely,
built over. The Great Hall was, according to the
Parliamentary Survey, a double aisled building
with stone piers and arches, no doubt of the
13th century, and with a vaulted porch. It was
restored late in the 15th century when the outer
walls and porch were probably re-built. The
foundations of the whole of the W. wall with
those of the porch and traces of the E. wall,
with a second porch, have been uncovered
and indicate a building about 65 ft. by 37¾ ft.;
they are entirely of brick and there were brick
turrets at the N. and S. ends. The Hall range
extended one bay further N. and here the foundations are entirely of rubble. This bay, as at Lincoln,
may have contained the butteries, and the Kitchen
no doubt stood still further to the N. The Chapel
stood on the E. of the court and was originally
a rectangular building 49 ft. by 16¾ ft., probably
of the 13th century; of this structure the rubble
foundations of the eastern part have been exposed;
the E. wall is finished with a splayed plinth of ashlar,
returned a short distance along the side walls. The
chapel was re-built and shortened by about half its
length in the first half of the 17th century and the
general lines of this rebuilding have been reproduced in the modern chapel now in process of
erection. The Great Chamber (about 49 ft. by
23½ ft.), pulled down in 1871, was probably a
13th-century building; its foundations, now
covered with concrete, have been completely
uncovered; there was a large fireplace projection
on the S. face. The courtyard was at one time
surrounded by a cloister but of this there is now
no trace; on its N.W. side there was evidently
direct access between the Great Hall and the
Great Tower. The foundations of other and later
buildings are indicated on the plan and need not
be further described. W. of the chapel and in the
former courtyard is a curious brick chamber or
cellar sunk in the ground; it may have served
either as a cistern or cesspool.
The Inner Gatehouse, (Plates 28 and 29)
with ranges flanking it on the N. and S., was
built late in the 15th century and stands to the W.
of the main block. The gatehouse itself is of
three storeys with a chamfered plinth and
embattled parapet; adjoining it on the N. is a
square staircase-wing rising to four storeys and
finished with an embattled parapet; the walls are
of red brick with black brick diapering and stone
dressings. The outer archway is rebated for doors
and has moulded jambs, three-centred arch and
label; the roll-moulding has a moulded base on
each jamb. Above the archway, on the W. face,
is a large shield in coloured brick and stone, of
the arms of Bishop John Russell (1480–94)—azure
two cheverons or between three roses argent; the
roses are of carved stone. The rooms of the two
storeys above the gateway have each a window of
three and two cinque-foiled lights respectively in
a square head with moulded reveals and label.
The parapet string-course is carved with paterae
and grotesque heads. The inner archway has
moulded responds, three-centred arch and label;
the windows of the two upper storeys are similar
to those on the outer front, but are both of two
lights. Flanking the window on the first floor
are two crosses in brick diapering, one of Latin
form on a sloping base, and the other a formy
cross. The staircase-tower is lit by square-headed
windows, and has windows cut through the N.E.
buttress of the gatehouse. The range to the S.
of the gatehouse is of similar date and character;
it is of two storeys and has an embattled parapet
and a 'crow-stepped' gable at the S. end (Plate
74). The windows are of one, two or three
square-headed lights, with moulded reveals and
labels, except those on the W. side of the
ground-floor, which have no labels; in the
middle of the W. side is a projecting chimney-stack. The middle window in the S. end of the
range is set in a projection resting on moulded
brick corbelling and finished with a moulded
ogee coping with crockets and finial; in the
spandrel is a large shield-of-arms, similar to that
on the gatehouse. The range N. of the gatehouse
has been destroyed but the weathering of the
former steep-pitched roof remains, together with a
restored doorway at the first-floor level, formerly
opening into the range.
Interior—The gate-hall has on each side a door-way with moulded stone jambs and four-centred
head, and further W. in the N. wall a recess with a
flat four-centred arch, containing a modern seat;
in the S. wall is a small opening with a four-centred head, a modern mullion and an old
shutter. The ceiling has moulded beams, perhaps
of the 15th century, forming six panels. The
room on the first floor has 15th-century ceiling-beams, similar to those below. The room on the
second floor has a roof of collar-beam type with
three trusses, chamfered main timbers and curved
braces. In the S. wall is a brick fireplace, with a
four-centred head; the doorway in the N. wall has
a 15th-century door of battens with moulded
fillets and strap-hinges; further W. is an oak-lined locker and a second doorway, now blocked.
The square tower on the N. is occupied entirely
by the staircase, up to the second-floor level;
above this the ascent is continued by a round
spiral staircase in the S.W. angle. The stairs are
solid oak balks, resting on a square newel of brick.
The two storeys of the S. range are sub-divided
by original timber-framed partitions. The rooms
on the ground-floor have several lockers or recesses.
The Curtain Wall between the Great Tower and
the Gatehouse range, is of late 15th-century date
and of red brick. It has an embattled parapet
with stone coping and a parapet-walk partly
supported on chamfered segmental arches springing
from narrow brick piers. The merlons of the
parapet are each pierced by a cruciform loop,
except one near the middle which contains the
much weathered head of a canopied niche. The
lower part of the wall is pierced by a series of plain
loops and the parapet-walk is approached by a
brick staircase adjoining the gatehouse-wing.
The remainder of the wall surrounding the site
has been destroyed but its course has been traced
almost throughout its circuit.
The Moat immediately surrounded the walls of
the inner enclosure, passing between them and the
parish churchyard. It has now been entirely
filled in. The moat was crossed in front of the
gatehouse by a brick bridge of two spans; the
arches have been destroyed but the brick pier and
abutment of the eastern span have been excavated.
The Outer Gatehouse, stands on the W. side of
the outer court or enclosure. It is a square
structure of red brick, with an embattled parapet
and was built probably late in the 15th century.
The inner and outer archways both have brick
jambs and four-centred arches of two chamfered
orders with moulded labels. S. of the gatehouse
is a modern or re-built lodge. The enclosing wall
of the outer court is of red brick and of late 15th-century date. It extends along the E. side of the
main road, for some distance to the N. and S. of
the gatehouse and turns eastwards along the Offord
Road to the parish churchyard. At the turning
point there is a diagonal buttress, brought to a
point on the face and having a pyramidal capping
and a small trefoiled niche in each face, near the
top. A short distance S. of the modern lodge are
indications of a former gateway or opening about
11 ft. wide. Another enclosure-wall, partly old,
extends S. and E. from the S.E. angle of the Great
Tower. At its eastern end is a gateway from the
churchyard, flanked by square brick piers. To the
E. of the main enclosure, there was a series of
fish-ponds; these have now been converted into
one large pond. A large area to the N. and E.
of the palace and including this pond, is enclosed
by a low bank.
Condition—Of great tower, ruined, but fairly
good; of gatehouses, good.
b(5). Manor House (Plate 27) and barn,
on S. side of Church Street, 60 yards S. of the
church. The House is of two storeys; the
walls are partly of rubble and partly timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are covered
with tiles and slates. It is of modified T-shaped
plan with the cross-wing at the N. end. The
main cross-wing is of late 16th-century date
but the N. wall fronting the road is probably
mediæval work. The S. wing was added early
in the 17th century and had two projecting blocks,
one at either end extending towards the E. An
extension of the cross-wing, towards the E., is
also of the 17th century. The internal arrangements were considerably altered early in the 18th
century, when the main cross-wing which appears
to have originally contained a range of three rooms
with a wide passage-way between the two easternmost, was further divided by the insertion of various
partitions, and corridors were added between the
two projecting blocks on the E. side of the S. wing.
An addition has also been made in the W. angle
of the two ranges and the S. wing has a modern
extension at the S. end.
Elevations—The N. front of the cross-wing has
two early 17th-century doorways, both square-headed and with moulded oak frames; the eastern
door (Plate 160) is of vertical and horizontal
planks riveted together with a moulded framing,
forming twelve panels, planted on the face; the
door is hung on three long strap-hinges with
fleur-de-lis ends and has an old drop-handle and
plate; the other door is of similar design but
smaller and is of nine panels with two hinges. The
central chimney-stack is original and has a square
base and a single octagonal shaft with a moulded
cap. The E. extension has, in the upper storey,
three original mullioned and transomed windows.
The upper storey projects on the S. side of the
cross-wing and has exposed joists and plain
brackets. The ground-floor has one original three-light window with moulded mullions, iron bars
set diagonally and leaded glazing. The beam over
the entrance to the passage-way is supported on
wall-posts with simple curved brackets. The 17th-century E. extension has in the upper storey three
mullioned and transomed windows similar to those
in the N. front and on the ground-floor is an early
18th-century battened door on a framing with
shouldered angles. An external staircase at the E.
end of the wing has a battened door at the top.
The W. elevation has no original features. The
E. elevation of the S. wing is mainly covered by the
early 18th-century addition which has two old
sash-windows. The S. projecting block is gabled
and both projecting blocks have mullioned and
transomed windows with leaded glazing. The
main chimney-stack at the N. end of the wing has
grouped diagonal shafts; the southern stack has
two diagonal stacks both on square bases.
Buckden, The Manor House
Interior—On the ground-floor one small room
in the main cross-wing is lined with early 18th-century panelling and has a moulded cornice and
dado rail and above the angle-fireplace is a bolection-moulded panel. The kitchen, at the S. end of the
early 17th-century wing, has the walls, generally,
lined with early 17th-century panelling. The
chimney-piece though now mutilated by the insertion of a modern range, is original, and elaborately
carved in low relief with round-headed panels containing leaf-design on either side of the opening;
the overmantel is divided into four bays by carved
pilasters and has in each bay a round arch and side
pilasters with guilloche-enrichment, leaf-spandrels
and moulded caps and bases to the pilasters. The
whole is surmounted by a band of egg and leaf
ornament supported on shaped dentils and surmounted by a wide frieze with an incised leaf
pattern, continued along the walls. The E.
extension of the main wing has chamfered ceiling-beams and two octagonal wall-posts with shaped
stops. On the first floor some of the timber-construction is exposed in the walls. The northernmost room of the S. wing is lined, to the height of
the door-head, with early 17th-century panelling
and has a frieze of incised semi-circles, carved
with conventional leaf-enrichment and a narrow
cornice; the doors are similar to the panelling but
on the E. side are two shallow cupboards with
raised panelled doors of early 18th-century date.
The fireplace (Plate 158) is flanked on either
side by fluted Doric pilasters with scrolled brackets
below the overmantel; the overmantel has a
narrow moulded shelf and is divided into three
bays by fluted Doric pilasters supporting an
entablature with a narrow moulded architrave,
and enriched frieze similar to that round the room
and a narrow moulded cornice; in each bay is a
lozenge-shaped panel within a small arch with
moulded archivolt, side pilasters and carved
leaf-spandrels. The room above the Kitchen is
similarly panelled but has a frieze carved with a
'wave' motif; the entrance-doorway is of early
18th-century date and close by is a blocked window
of the same period. The chimney-piece (Plate
158) is similar to that in the room
adjoining but the side-pilasters have carved
arabesque panels, as have also those dividing the
overmantel into four bays; these have enriched
panels with guilloche-ornament on the archivolts,
the side pilasters are enriched with carved arabesque
work and the spandrels carved with conventional
leaves; the frieze is an elaboration of that round the
room. A room in the E. extension of the main
wing has a corner-cupboard with a dentilled
cornice; it is probably of early 18th-century date
but is not in situ.
The Barn adjoining the E. extension of the main
wing on the E. is timber-framed and weather-boarded; the roof is tiled. It is of 17th-century
date and has queen-post roof-trusses supported
Condition—Of house and barn, good.
b(6). Lion Hotel at S.E. corner of the Great
North Road and Church Street, is of two storeys
and attics, partly timber-framed and plastered
and partly of brick; the roofs are tiled. The
building dates from c. 1500 and originally consisted
of a Hall-block with a N. wing extending towards
the E. and probably a S. wing of a similar character,
all apparently of two storeys; the upper storey
of the Hall-block projected on the W. side. In the
18th century considerable alterations were made;
the whole of the front of W. part of the building
was raised, the N. wing was extended northwards,
the S. wing was re-built or added and a small
addition was probably made on the E. side of
the Hall. Modern work includes a three-storey
addition on the S. side of the building, additions
on the back of both the main block and the E. wing,
the addition of a few feet on the W. side of the
Hall-block and considerable alterations to both the
interior and exterior of the building. The elevations have no ancient features.
Inside the building the Hall, now the lounge
(Plate 30), has an open timbered ceiling with
a moulded cross-beam, a similarly moulded
longitudinal beam to the N. half of the room
and two similar beams running diagonally from
the middle of the ceiling to either side of the
fireplace in the S. wall. At the junction of these
beams, in the middle of the ceiling, is a large
central boss (Plate 159), carved in the shape of
a rose with seven petals and with an 'Agnus Dei'
in the middle, encircled by a ribbon inscribed
in black-letter "Ecce Agnus Dei"; behind the
boss are four carved leaves, one of which is said
to be modern; the E. wall-post and wall-plates
are also moulded and the ceiling-joists are laid
flat; the beam forming the head of the original
front wall retains the mortices of the former
uprights, and at the S. end of the room the floorjoists are carried across it and indicate the projection of the original upper storey. There are no
mortices on the soffit of the N. end of this beam
and the mouldings on the wall-plate on the E. wall
stop at a corresponding distance from the N. wall,
suggesting that the N. end of the hall was divided
off to form the 'screens'; the whole ceiling sags
towards the middle and the central part of the W.
wall-plate appears to have been removed. The
large open fireplace at the S. end of the room is
original but has been partly filled in and the jambs
have been altered; it is spanned by a moulded
and cambered beam carved with long leaf-spandrels
with small rose-stops at the ends; above the beam
is an 18th-century moulded fascia and shelf. On
the first floor, hidden in a cupboard, is the E.
wall-post to the central roof-truss to the Hall-block, and the easternmost roof-truss to the roof
of the original E. wing remains in one of the
Conditions—Good, much altered.
b(7). George Hotel and houses adjoining,
opposite (6), is of three storeys; the walls are
partly of brick and partly of plastered timber-framing; the roofs are tiled. The house forms
three sides of a quadrangle, the N. and S. ranges
being of late 17th-century date; the main E.
range was re-built, or at any rate refronted, in the
18th century and no doubt heightened at the same
time. The E. front is entirely of the 18th century.
The N. wing, of two storeys, has a gabled wing on
the S. side with some timber-framing exposed and
with the date and initials R.L. 1688. Inside the
building several rooms have chamfered ceiling-beams. The dog-legged staircase (Plate 165),
in the middle part of the E. range, is of late
17th- or early 18th-century date and has turned
balusters, square newels and moulded rails and
strings; the rails are continued across the
strings of the flights above to butt against
the newels; the bottom newel is of balusterform. The staircase in the S. range has flat-shaped balusters of 17th-century date. Some
rooms on the first floor have early 18th-century
moulded architraves to the fireplace-openings and
one fireplace has a moulded shelf in addition.
There are also some panelled doors of the same
period. In the S. range there is some early 17th-century panelling.
Buckden, Plan Showing the Position of Monuments.
The Dovecote, W. of the hotel, is of two storeys
and of brick with a pyramidal tiled roof. It is
probably of late 17th- or early 18th-century
Condition—Of house, good.
a(8). House, on the N. side of Mill Street, 580
yards E. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled.
It was built early in the 17th century on a
T-shaped plan, with the cross-wing at the
E. end. It was extensively altered in the
18th century. In the front doorway is an
original door (Plate 160) of battens, divided
into six panels by moulded and mitred fillets.
On the E. side of the house is an original
doorway with guilloche ornament and a double
row of billets on the frame; above is a cornice
with 'egg and tongue' enrichment supported on
two scrolled and carved brackets; the door has
six moulded panels. The W. gable has original
barge-boards, with 'egg and tongue' ornament.
Inside the building there is an original chamfered
ceiling-beam in the kitchen.
Condition—Good, much altered.
a(9). House, opposite (8), is of two storeys,
timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled.
It was built early in the 17th century on an
L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards
the W. and S.; there are later and modern
additions at the back. The original central
chimney-stack has grouped diagonal shafts. Inside the building some of the rooms have chamfered
ceiling-beams. The W. room has some exposed
timber-framing and an original beam with guilloche-ornament.
The following monuments, unless otherwise
described, are of the 17th century and of two
storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs
are tiled or thatched. Some of the buildings have
original chimney-stacks and exposed ceiling-beams.
Condition—Good or fairly good.
b(10). Cottage, two tenements, on the N. side of
Mill Street, 160 yards W. of (8), was built
probably early in the 18th century on an L-shaped
plan, with the wings extending towards the W.
b(11). Cottage, three tenements, opposite (10), is
of late 17th- or early 18th-century date and has a
cross-wing at the W. end.
b(12). Two barns, 40 yards W. of (11), are of
late 17th or early 18th-century date and are
weather-boarded. On the N. wall are preserved
two large thatch-hooks.
b(13). Cottage, 20 yards S.W. of (12), was built
late in the 17th or early in the 18th century.
b(14). Cottage, 10 yards S.W. of (13) and was
built about the same period.
b(15). House, on the S. side of Church Street,
130 yards W. of the church, is of L-shaped plan,
with the wings extending towards the E. and N.
b(16). House, three tenements, 70 yards S.W. of
the church, has, inside the building, an original
b(17). Outbuilding, belonging to the Vicarage
and 90 yards S. of the church, is of one storey, partly
weather-boarded; it has tall diagonal chimneyshafts.
b(18). Cottage (Plate 71), on the E. side of
Luck's Lane, 160 yards S. of the church, is of
L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards
the N. and W.
b(19). Cottage, two tenements, 30 yards S.S.W. of
(18), has been refronted with brick.
b(20). Range of three cottages, on the E. side of
the road, 60 yards S.S.W. of (6). The original
central chimney-stack has four grouped shafts, set
a(21). Spread Eagle Inn and house, on the W.
side of High Street, 250 yards N.N.W. of the church,
was built early in the 18th century.
a(22). Range of cottages, 15 yards N. of (21), was
built probably early in the 18th century and has
three gables in front.
a(23). Range of two cottages, on the E. side of the
road, 200 yards N.N.E. of (22). The southern
cottage is an early 18th-century addition and has
walls faced with modern brick.
b(24). Cottage, on the E. side of Silver Street,
260 yards E.N.E. of the church, was built probably
early in the 18th century.
a(25). Cottage, on the W. side of Silver Street,
300 yards N.E. of the church, was built probably
early in the 18th century.