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Withington Manor

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Widindon; Whityngdon in Coteshold; Whittington

In the civil parish of Withington.
In the historic county of Gloucestershire.
Modern Authority of Gloucestershire.
1974 county of Gloucestershire.
Medieval County of Gloucestershire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SP03021563
Latitude 51.83930° Longitude -1.95747°

Withington Manor has been described as a probable Palace, and also as a probable Fortified Manor House.

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains.

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

Description

The Manor House at Withington, a possession of the Bishop of Worcester, was recorded in the 15th century, though now mainly 16/17th century. Dovecote, 17th century, square and gabled with a lantern. (PastScape ref. Verey 1970)

In the Middle Ages the bishops of Worcester frequently stayed on their manor of Withington during journeys through their large diocese. About 1182 one group of tenants owed additional labour services to meet the needs of the household when the bishop was in residence, and in 1288 a freehold estate at Upcote owed the service of carrying writs within the diocese. Godfrey Giffard, bishop 1268–1302, was a regular visitor and in 1271 had licence from the Crown, possibly not acted upon, to crenellate his house at Withington. A lease of the manor house and the demesne farm in 1476 reserved the use of the house for visits by the bishop, at which time the tenant was required to move into the gatehouse; the tenant also had to provide hospitality for the steward and other officers coming to hold the manor court at Michaelmas.
The manor house, called Manor Farm in the late 19th century and Withington Manor in 1998, occupies with its farm buildings a large site at north end of the upper part of Withington village; in the Middle Ages it may have comprised a complex of buildings, as the reference to the gatehouse in 1476 suggests. The earliest part of the surviving house is an L-shaped mid 17th-century building, partly ashlar faced, with twin gables on both the east and south facades. (VCH)

A Royal licence to crenellate was granted in 1271 Oct 20 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).

Comments

How much work, if any, was done with regard to the 1271 licence is unknown, although the gatehouse in existence in the C15 may suggest that some work was done. Bishop Giffard's previous position in royal government (He was Lord Chancellor 1266-68) would have meant having the status and royal favour of a patent letter granting a licence to crenellate would have been both easy to obtain and a de rigour status symbol, although this would probably have been reflected only decoratively in his house.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
PastScape   County HER       Listing   I. O. E.
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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 before 1 February 2016

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