Great house site, garden earthworks and associated remains immediately north, west and south of St Mary's Church
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1020974
Date first listed: 02-Jan-1976
Date of most recent amendment: 12-Nov-2003
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This copy shows the entry on 14-Dec-2018 at 12:32:56.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: West Oxfordshire (District Authority)
National Grid Reference: SP 28590 28064
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.
Reasons for Designation
Medieval great houses were the residences of high-status non-Royal households.
They had domestic rather than military functions and show little or no sign of
fortification, even of a purely cosmetic nature. Great houses share several of
the characteristics of royal palaces, and in particular shared similar
characteristics of size, sophistication, and decoration of the architecture.
Great houses usually consist of a group of buildings, including a great hall,
service rooms, one or more kitchens, several suites of chambers for the
owners, the household and its guests, and a gatehouse. Other ancillary
buildings are known to have been present but very rarely survive. Earlier
examples typically comprised a collection of separate buildings, but through
the 14th and 15th century there was increasing integration of the buildings
into a few larger buildings. By the later medieval period, such complexes were
commonly laid out around one or more formal courtyards; in the 16th century
this would occasionally be contrived so that the elevations were symmetrical.
Many great houses are still notable for the high quality of their architecture
and for the opulence of their furnishings. Several examples contain
substantially intact buildings, others consist of ruins or complexes of
Great houses are found throughout England, although there is a concentration
in the south and Midlands. Further north, great houses were more heavily
fortified, reflecting more unsettled political and social conditions, but
their domestic purpose and status were still predominant. Fewer than 250
examples of great houses have been identified. As a rare monument class which
provide an important insight into the lives of medieval aristocratic or gentry
households, all examples will be nationally important.
The great house and gardens at Salford include all the typical elements of a country house of the 16th and 17th centuries, including planned formal gardens, a large house, gatehouse range and further walled yards and ranges of buildings, which demonstrate an expensive undertaking. In addition, the remains of the water features and the adjacent fields containing ridge and furrow indicate the presence of earlier remains of a medieval manor on the site which was probably altered or demolished during the later work as a result of increasing affluence and changing fashion. Archaeological investigations including geophysical survey and documentary research show that the visible earthworks form part of a well-preserved group of associated remains which will contain important archaeological evidence relating to the history, construction and occupation of the manor site and the economy of the village as a whole.
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.
The monument lies on an artificial terraced slope immediately west of the
present day village of Salford, looking west across a spring-fed stream at
the bottom of a narrow valley. It includes the earthwork and upstanding
remains of a late medieval or early post-medieval great house, a
contemporary barn, the buried remains of further associated buildings,
terraced formal garden earthworks, a fishpond and related water control
features and an area of medieval cultivation earthworks (ridge and
The most visually impressive remains are the earthworks of the formal gardens
which descend from east to west in three wide terraces each linked by a broad
ramp. These gardens cover an area of approximately 120m by 60m, with each
terrace roughly equal in size. The base of the slope is marked by a series of
leats controlling water supplied by a stream which emanates from springheads
located some 600m to the north west. A short section of this stream course is
included in the scheduling.
The tithe map for Salford depicts the level platform at the top of the
slope surmounted by a large north-south aligned house, commanding the view
across the gardens. This building no longer stands but its position is
marked by a series of depressions and banks which indicate the presence of
buried remains. From the map evidence and the results of a modern
geophysical survey of the site carried out in October 1997 the house is
known to have measured over 40m long and up to 20m in width. Although the
exact date of the house's construction is unknown, the layout of the
complex depicted on the map is typical of a mansion and formal gardens of
the 16th or 17th centuries. Associated with the house, running eastwards
from its location towards St Mary's Church (a Listed Building Grade II),
lie the buried remains of a series of buildings identified from minor
earthworks and geophysical survey. These remains are believed to represent
a gatehouse range, which formed the entrance to the manorial complex and
separated the formal setting of the mansion from a grouping of dependant
farm buildings and fishponds to the north.
The main fishpond (now dry) is located some 30m north of the church. It
measures up to 40m in width and 50m in length and was formerly fed by a
substantial leat which flowed from the springs to the north west. A
second, smaller pond lay adjacent to the south east. This however, was
largely overlain by a later extension to the churchyard and is not
included in the scheduling. The cluster of farm buildings which stood to
the north of the gatehouse range, bounded to the north by the water supply
to the fishponds, is now mainly known from slight undulations and the
patterns of foundations detected by geophysical survey. One building,
termed the `Great Barn' on later maps, still stands, although the upper
wall courses and the roof have been rebuilt in later periods. Although the
agricultural range is clearly associated with the 16th-17th century
mansion, it is possible that some of these features are earlier in origin
and indicate the presence of an earlier medieval manor which was later
remodelled to meet the changing fashion for more comfortable and imposing
houses, within more formal designed settings. The fishponds certainly
appear to date from an earlier manorial layout. So too the pattern of
medieval or post-medieval cultivation earthworks which survive in two
fields to the north and east of the mansion's grounds. A sample of the
best preserved area of ridge and furrow, including the headland between
the field and the manor boundary, is included in the scheduling in order
to preserve the archaeological relationship with the mansion site and any
buried remains of its medieval precursor.
All standing buildings (including the above ground fabric of the great
barn) and all fences and modern field boundary walls are excluded from the
scheduling, although the ground beneath these features is included,
together with the foundations of the great barn. The foundations protrude
15cm above ground in places, but are distinct from the later main wall
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: 30854
Legacy System: RSM
PRN 5760, SMRO, Salford Manor and gardens, (1993)
This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing