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HALNAKER HOUSE

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A fortified medieval manor house and part of its garden and landscaped grounds. The main buildings, which survive mainly as ruins incorporated into a modern garden, range around a roughly north-south aligned, quadrangular walled courtyard, constructed during the 13th and 14th centuries, with later alterations and additions. Traces of an earlier, 12th century, house built by Roger de Haye, are likely to survive as below-ground archaeological features. The buildings are constructed of flint rubble and clunch with sandstone ashlar dressings, with some later brickwork added during subsequent alterations and repairs. The courtyard was entered through the southern range by means of a 14th century gatehouse of which two storeys survive. Also surviving within the southern range are traces of 16th century additions. After further modifications in the 18th century by the Duke of Richmond, the house was allowed to fall into decay during the early 1880s. The eastern range is occupied by the remains of domestic apartments and a 13th century chapel. There are no visible remains of the western range, but evidence for all buildings will survive in the form of buried features. The standing ruins are Listed Grade I. Water was supplied to the house via a well situated north of the courtyard, and during the post-medieval period, by a sunken, octagonal reservoir, situated on higher ground 130 metres to the north east. This feature, which descends in three terraces to a central depression at a depth of about 3 metres, is known as 'The Cockpit' and may have been subsequently used for cock-fighting. Cartographic evidence suggests that the reservoir, a rectangular garden earthwork and brick revetted terracing to the west of the main courtyard, date to the 18th century.

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