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Bekesborne Archbishops Palace

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;

In the civil parish of Bekesbourne With Patrixbourne.
In the historic county of Kent.
Modern Authority of Kent.
1974 county of Kent.
Medieval County of Kent.

OS Map Grid Reference: TR19355553
Latitude 51.25672° Longitude 1.14260°

Bekesborne Archbishops Palace has been described as a certain Palace.

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.
This is a Grade 2 listed building protected by law*.


This was the Gatehouse of Archbishop Thomas Cranmer's Palace. Two storeys red brick laid in English bond. Hipped slate roof. Three casement windows of 2 lights with 4 centred heads and stone mullions. In the west wall is a four-centred stone doorway with a stone over it inscribed "T C (Thomas Cranmer) 1552" and a cartouche of the arms of Archbishop Parker of Canterbury. Chimneybreast on north wall. To the east of the cottage is a red brick barn with a tiled roof with gable ends, hipped waggon entrance and casement windows. (Listed Building Report)

Site of an archiepiscopal palace, built in circa 1552 for Cranmer using buildings belonging to Christchurch, Canterbury and destroyed in the Civil War; only the gatehouse, now a cottage survives. Excavations uncovered Roman settlement debris. The present house is late C18 to C19. (PastScape)

The prior's apartment and adjoining chapel, the hall and the prior's dormitory and everything else except a lodge and two barns, were built during the reign of Henry 7th by Prior Thomas Goldston of Christchurch, Canterbury. At the dissolution the estate passed to Thomas Colepeper and then to Thomas Cranmer who made the buildings into the Archbishop's Palace and built the gateway in 1552. The remains of the palace are in the gardens around the house. (PastScape ref. Scheduling report)
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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The bibliography owes much to various bibliographies produced by John Kenyon for the Council for British Archaeology, the Castle Studies Group and others.
Suggestions for finding online and/or hard copies of bibliographical sources can be seen at this link.
Minor archaeological investigations, such as watching brief reports, and some other 'grey' literature is most likely to be held by H.E.R.s but is often poorly referenced and is unlikely to be recorded here, or elsewhere, but some suggestions can be found here.
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*The listed building may not be the actual medieval building, but a building on the site of, or incorporating fragments of, the described site.
This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:06

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