A medieval pleasaunce 30m south east of Court Lodge: part of the landscaped setting of Bodiam Castle


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1009013

Date first listed: 11-Mar-1968

Date of most recent amendment: 15-Dec-1994


Ordnance survey map of A medieval pleasaunce 30m south east of Court Lodge: part of the landscaped setting of Bodiam Castle
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: East Sussex

District: Rother (District Authority)

Parish: Bodiam

National Grid Reference: TQ 78465 25947


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Gardens have been a feature of important houses since at least Roman times, if not earlier, but in the 16th century gardens became larger and more formal. Recurring features were terraces, ponds and canals, and in the design of these there was a continuous interplay between social aspirations, artistic aims and changing fashions. The earthwork remains of such gardens are important archaeological features illustrating their recreational and ornamental function and of course, the scale of investment in time and money. Despite some limited disturbance caused by recent drainage works, dumping and agricultural activities, the pleasaunce 30m south east of Court Lodge survives well and is known from partial excavation to contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed. It represents an integral part of a rare, early example of a particularly grand garden, incorporating one or more buildings, and forming a carefully contrived and impressive setting from which Bodiam Castle could be displayed to important visitors.


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


The monument includes the earthwork remains of a medieval pleasaunce, or ornamental garden and viewing platform, situated on a ridge 250m north of Bodiam Castle. The pleasaunce formed an elaboration of the planned, landscaped setting of the castle, the other surviving remains of which include ornamental ponds and terraces grouped around the castle moat. These further remains are included in a separate scheduling which includes Bodiam Castle. The pleasaunce is a substantial, south west-north east aligned, rectangular earthwork platform measuring 66m by 15m and rising to a height of 1.6m on its southern, downslope side. To the north, the ground rises to form a further terrace, which, despite some modern disturbance, contains at its western end a raised, rectangular bank measuring 21m by 15m and surviving to a height of 0.2m. This is the site of a building or small enclosure. The eastern edge of the platform has become accentuated by subsequent excavation, whilst the western side is bounded by two, north-south aligned, linear hollows. To the north, the modern grounds of Court Lodge and traces of post-medieval field boundaries overlie and partially obscure the medieval remains. A small scale excavation at the western end of the large platform in 1961 revealed traces of medieval structures. The monument was the subject of a detailed survey in 1988. The modern fences surrounding and crossing the monument are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 25454

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
RCHM(E), , Bodiam Castle Survey, (1988)
'Battle and District Historical Society' in Transactions of the Battle and District Historical Society: Volume 10, (1960), 22-23
Simpson, W D, 'Sussex Archaeological Collections' in The Moated Homestead, Church and Castle of Bodiam, , Vol. 97, (1931), 69-99

End of official listing