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Petworth House

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Peteorde; Peteswurda; Putteworth; Petteworth

In the civil parish of Petworth.
In the historic county of Sussex.
Modern Authority of West Sussex.
1974 county of West Sussex.
Medieval County of Sussex (Rape of Arundel).

OS Map Grid Reference: SU97592190
Latitude 50.98821° Longitude -0.61092°

Petworth House has been described as a Palace although is doubtful that it was such, and also as a probable Fortified Manor House.

There are masonry footings remains.

This is a Grade 1 listed building protected by law*.


Petworth House. This is the most important residence in the County of Sussex. The first building here was erected by the first Baron Percy, who was granted a licence to crenellate in 1309. Of this first building the main structure of the Chapel at the north end of the present house survives. The Wine Cellar beneath what was once the Great Hall probably dates from the C.14. The eighth Earl of Northumberland rebuilt or enlarged the house between 1576 and 1582, and the ninth or "Wisard" Earl of Northumberland again did so after 1621. (PastScape–ref. listing report)

Petworth House is 17th century on the site of and incorporating remains of the 13th century house. (PastScape–ref. Batho, 1957)

A Royal licence to crenellate was granted in 1308 Oct 4 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).


Location is right for early medieval manor house or castle and relatively early licence date might imply rebuilding of existing manor or castle in stone. The Percies held the manor from mid C12 and it would have had some sort of manor house from well before that date. Quite how fortified this manor or the stone mansion of the early C14 were is questionable. King calls this a possible castle site, which, in his terms, means unlikely. However almost certainly would have had some defensive features such as a gatehouse. Purchased by Henry VIII in 1535, although probably not much work done at that time, and use as a royal palace is debatable.
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This record last updated 15/08/2017 15:56:52

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