Aldingbourne Bishops Palace

Has been described as a Certain Palace (Bishop)

There are earthwork remains

NameAldingbourne Bishops Palace
Alternative NamesAlyngbourne
Historic CountrySussex
Modern AuthorityWest Sussex
1974 AuthorityWest Sussex
Civil ParishAldingbourne

From early times Aldingbourne was one of the chief seats of the Bishop of Chichester, who had there a 'palace' or manor-house and a large demesne farm. By 1606 the place was in decay although when the manor was sold in 1648 it included the manor house and chapel. No buildings now remain and although the site of the 'palace' is uncertain, early maps agree with modern tradition in placing it adjoining Tote Copse, a castle mound.

A park attached to the manor is noted in 1225 and mention is made of its paling in the same century. Most of the large timber had been felled before the mid-17th c and the whole was disparked about that time. (PastScape–ref. VCH)

Gatehouse Comments

Presumably a successor to Tote Copse Castle. In the reign of Henry VI Bishop Moleynes obtained license to crenellate the manor house of Aldingbourne.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSU922050
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  • Emery, Anthony, 2006, Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales Vol. 3 Southern England (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) p. 440
  • Jones, R., 2003, 'Hastings to Herstmonceux: the castles of Sussex' in Rudling, D. (ed) The archaeology of Sussex to AD2000 (Great Dunham: Heritage Marketing and Publications) p. 171-8
  • Salter, Mike, 2000, The Castles of Sussex (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 14 (confused with Tote Copse)
  • Thompson, M.W., 1998, Medieval bishops' houses in England and Wales (Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing) p. 168, 173
  • Salzman, L.F. (ed), 1953, VCH Sussex Vol. 4 p. 134 online transcription
  • Elwes, Dudley George Cary, 1876, A history of the Castles, Mansions, and Manors of Western Sussex (London: Longmans) p. 4-5 online copy

Primary Sources

  • Maxwell Lyte, H.C. (ed), 1927, Calendar of Charter Rolls 5 Henry VI - 8 Henry VIII, AD 1427-1516, with an appendix, 1215-1288 Vol. 6. (HMSO) p. 94-5 online copy


  • Payne, Naomi, 2003, The medieval residences of the bishops of Bath and Wells, and Salisbury (PhD Thesis University of Bristol) Appendix B: List of Medieval Bishop's Palaces in England and Wales (available via EThOS)