2018 Archaeology Report

The Archaeology Group had a quiet year, mainly
sorting and identifying finds.
We did however go back to Rowden Abbey, with a
JCB, to try and resolve a question that we had
about the topography, at the time of the 1651
rebuild. A trench was put in, which ran from the
neighbour’s boundary, out toward the fish pool. The
result of this was, that we now believe that the
terrace, which is now relatively level, had been
artificially created, possibly during the house
rebuild, as, between 1 and 1.5 metres of soil and
stone had been introduced, this created the
levelled southern garden, overlooking the fishpond.


National Trust to lead season of excavations at Herefordshire Estate which could have origins from as far back as Norman Conquest

A panoramic photo of a country estate with a lake in the foreground

The view from the manor house bedroom overlooking the orchard at Brockhampton Estate© Steve Betts

A Herefordshire estate enclosing a ruined chapel built a century after the Norman Conquest will be at the centre of archaeological investigations this summer, hosting a series of excavations under the watch of two National Trust experts and the volunteers and visitors they will train in geophysics, surveying and other key talents of the trade.

Brockhampton Estate is thought to have an Anglo-Saxon name, suggesting that a settlement may have existed there before 1066. The earliest heritage within the modern grounds – the chapel site – was probably constructed during the 1180s by the Brockhampton Family, who were first recognised in a charter dated from 1166.

“The project is focusing upon the early history of the estate – in particular the origins of Lower Brockhampton House and the chapel,” says Christopher Atkinson, the Project Archaeologist for the Summer of Archaeology initiative.


The archaeology group was formed in April 2007 as a result of David Jones from Manor Farm, Bredenbury, mentioning that there were at least two lost buildings within 100 metres of his present house. One was thought to be an old tithe barn, the other an old farmhouse, which was purchased by Queen Anne’s bounty in 1743, to be used as the Rectory.

Archaeology Group Report
Steve Palmer – March 2013
Since October 2011 the Archaeology Group has been busy, excavating, initially at Acton Beauchamp and more recently at Manor Farm Bredenbury.
We were asked by Mr George Woodruff, to investigate the archaeology at Church House Farm Acton Beauchamp.
Documentary evidence gathered by Dr W.M Pratt, led us to begin an excavation in a small orchard to the south of the church, which a Tudor manorial survey had indicated was the site of a small holding, this had gone by 1839 when the tythe map was drawn up.

In between the digs at Acton Beauchamp and Bredenbury, we took part in the Studmarsh dig “Past in Mind”, at Bringsty which is owned by the National Trust, to assist Herefordshire Archaeology in a joint project with Herefordshire Mind, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The group will meet at Manor Farm Bredenbury on Saturdays from March 2013 if weather allows.

If anyone is interested in joining us in our endeavours, please contact Steve Palmer by telephone on 01885 490269 or e-mail  at:

Previous Digs – (NB: 2009 was literally a ‘washout’!)
September 2010 – or ‘Tales from the Trenches | July 2010 | July 2008 | July 2007