Scrivelsby Court

Has been described as a Questionable Masonry Castle, and also as a Questionable Fortified Manor House

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains

NameScrivelsby Court
Alternative NamesScrivelsby Hall
Historic CountryLincolnshire
Modern AuthorityLincolnshire
1974 AuthorityLincolnshire
Civil ParishScrivelsby

Gatehouse, now small country house. Early C13, c.1380, 1574, late C18, 1958-60 by S. Wright of Yorkshire. Red brick, limestone ashlar dressings, some limestone rubble. Plain tile roofs with stone coped and brick tumbled gables with finial on south gable. Single gable and 2 ridge stacks with octagonal stock brick shafts taken from the former early C19 house to the east of the gatehouse, demolished in c.1960. 2 storeys, 6 irregular bay west front with C13 limestone rubble buttress to left and small section of C13 rubble wall adjoining C13 rubble north return wall. Remainder of ground floor to right, of c.1380 in red brick and defined by C16 moulded ashlar string course. Carriage archway to left with shallow pointed head, rectangular relieving arch, continuous moulded ashlar surround and filled in with C20 wooden panelling containing rectangular porch with double ribbed doors. Small rectangular squint to left with rectangular ashlar hood mould and fragmentary ashlar bust, probably early C13 and excavated from the north-east corner foundations in 1958-60. Small rectangular opening above with sharp triangular ashlar hood mould with a C13 king's head inserted, also excavated from the foundations. Likewise a small head immediately below and a couple of plain corbels. 2 rectangular windows to the right of carriage archway. That immediately next to it had originally 3 cusped ogee headed lights with an ashlar surround of c.1330, but was at some time opened up into a doorway and now has a C20 3 light wooden mullion window, with the hood mould of c.1380 remaining. The window beyond of c.1380 is intact with 3 ogee headed cusped lights, ashlar surround, hood mould and head label stops. Wooden 2 light mullion window to the left of the carriage archway with ashlar surround and hood mould. A similar window beyond inserted into a blocked, ashlar dressed doorway with hood mould, semi-circular head above blocked with brick

Break in bonding of brick to left possibly where a buttress was placed as revealed in Buck's engraving of 1726. Single 2 light C20 wooden mullion window beyond, with ashlar surround and hood mould. First floor of 1574, above ashlar string course which rises above carriage archway with rectangular plaque above with inverted shield and scrolls. Small early C13 heal excavated from foundations, to left. Above carriage archway is a vesica containing a quatrefoil with ashlar rectangular hood mould and flanking ashlar string course. Tumbled gable rises above with clockface and terminates with rectangle containing cross. 4 rectangular windows to the left, 3 rectangular windows to the right, all with ashlar surrounds and 4 narrow lights with C20 wooden mullions. South end with ground floor of c.1380 with C20 double glazed doors and small rectangular opening in the brick to the left. Moulded ashlar string course above and brickwork of 1574, with glazing bar sash and brick band above. East front of 9 irregular bays with bricwork of c.1380 just overlapping south-east corner with several C13 limestone blocks below. 3 southern bays of C16 brick, the ground floor of the central 2 bays containing carriage archway and doorway of brickwork of c.1380, with C16 brickwork above. 4 bays to right rebuilt in 1958-60 re-using C16 brick. Carriage archway to right with shallow pointed head, continuous ashlar moulded surround and blocked by C20 mullion and transom window. C16 doorway to right with pointed head, continuous moulded ashlar surround and partially glazed ribbed door. Small triangular headed opening above and 2 C13 stone corbels. Small section of ashlar dressed plinth to left and 3 glazing bar sashes in C18 openings, with segmental heads. Small horizontal C20 casement to right of doorway, and 3 glazing bar sashes with flat heads beyond. Moulded ashlar string course above carriage archway and doorway with rectangular plaque inscribed 1574 and with a coat of arms. C13 animal head to left. Oval window above inscribed with quatrefoil and rectangular ashlar hood mould, flanked by ashlar string course. Tumbled gable rises above with clock face and terminating in a rectangle inscribed with cross. To the left, 2 glazing bar casements flank a single wooden mullion window with 4 narrow lights. To the right a long C20 fixed glazing bar window, with 3 glazing bar casements beyond. Low C20 stock brick additions to north of no interest. Interior with single first floor wall level with north side of carriage opening, of box framing with curved braces. Tie beam roof intact with curved braces, upper sections covered in by plasterboard. Hall window in eastern carriage archway with roundels and plaques of C16 and C17 stained glass removed to the gatehouse from the house, now demolished. They include a roundel with coat of arms and inscribed 1662; a plaque also with a coat of arms and inscribed 1658. There are six plaques of men dressed as knights and courtiers, and several women, all in Elizabethan and early Stuart dress. Smaller details include Christ and disciples setting sail, St. Dunstan and the Devil, William Tell and St. Catherine. Drawing room to the south includes 2 roundels of St. Matthew and St. Mark and the red rose of Lancaster and the white rose of York flanking a coat of arms. Hall and passage windows to the north-west contain various stained glass coats of arms. The first floor west window of a large quatrefoil contains 5 roundels, probably C17 Flemish in origin, including St. Peter and St. Andrew, a female saint being led out of a classical city to martyrdom, organ playing, reading and drinking scenes, and grouped saints. C20 staircase and bolecton moulded stone fireplaces. Situated on a double moated site, both moats partially intact. (Listed Building Report)

Mid to late C16 gatehouse to the demolished Scrivelsby Hall which was demolished in 1955. The gatehouse comprises two storeys and is linear in plan, and consists a central range over the gateway with ranges adjoining to the north and south. (PastScape)

Gatehouse Comments

Scrivelsby Hall was a thick walled building and suggested as the site of possible castle although prints of the building in the C18/C19 are entirely domestic. It was a manorial centre although the associated village has now gone as the result of park landscaping, although the parish church of St Benedict survives. The surrounding park was redesigned in 1790 but possibly had a medieval origin. This was the home of the Dymokes, the hereditary Champions of the Crown of England since 1350, and it could be expected that their martial status might be displayed in the architecture of their home. However, David King called this a 'possible' castle a term he generally used for sites for which he had serious doubts and Emery states that the house built by John Dymoke in the 1370's, after the Dymoke's acquired the manor, was not fortified although it reused the moat of the earlier house of the Marmion's. The Champion of England was a position of grand serjeantry i.e. gentry, although definitely top end gentry, rather than baronial, so a castle is unlikely. However there may have been defensive elements beyond the moat in both the Marmion House and the Dymoke house, and this house was of a status and of a similar form to many accepted fortified manor houses.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

This is a Grade 1 listed building protected by law

Historic England Scheduled Monument Number
Historic England Listed Building number(s)
Images Of England
Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceTF270660
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  • Osborne, Mike, 2010, Defending Lincolnshire: A Military History from Conquest to Cold War (The History Press) p. 78
  • Salter, Mike, 2002, The Castles of the East Midlands (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 59
  • Emery, Anthony, 2000, Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales Vol. 2 East Anglia, Central England and Wales (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) p. 292 online preview
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus and John Harris; revised by Nicholas Antram, 1989, Buildings of England: Lincolnshire (Harmondsworth) p. 355
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 265 (possible)
  • RCHME, 1963, Monuments threatened or destroyed: a select list: 1956-1962 (HMSO) p. 7, 49
  • Harvey, Alfred, 1911, Castles and Walled Towns of England (London: Methuen and Co)
  • Turner, T.H. and Parker, J.H., 1859, Some account of Domestic Architecture in England (Oxford) Vol. 3 Part 2 p. 229 online copy



  • 1913, Associated Architectural and Archaeological Societies' Reports and Papers Vol. 32 p. 9-14