Hereford Bishops Palace

Has been described as a Certain Palace (Bishop)

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains

NameHereford Bishops Palace
Alternative Names
Historic CountryHerefordshire
Modern AuthorityHerefordshire
1974 AuthorityHereford and Worcester
Civil ParishHereford

Stands on south of Cathedral-cloister. The earliest part of the palace is the surviving wall of the late eleventh-century chapel which was a structure of the double-chapel type common in Germany and north France. The great hall of the palace is late C12 and was a large timber building with a stone base to the outer walls and perhaps a stone porch on the west side. It had aisles and was at least three bays long, the bay at each end, north and south, now form cross wings but may originally have formed part of the hall, in which case it would have had five bays. The first thing that strikes the visitor is the exceptionally large size of the timbers, each post must have been before carving, 4.5 feet square. An investigation was made of the building whilst empty by H.J. Powell. The report includes plans. Bishop William de Vere (1186-1198) is the most likely builder of the celebrated timber aisled hall in the Bishop's Palace. It was a sumptuous late C12 hall, a product of a new fashion. It had four-bays with side porch and an end chamber-block of three floors over a basement. The Palace complex was separated from the cathedral by a stone wall. Its main front faced west to what may have then been the main north-south route through Hereford. The main block of the palace runs north to south and is in five bays. Largely remodelled by Bishop Bisse (1713-21) who formed the present hall and cased the building in brick. The drawing room in the centre of the east side was formed by Bishop Atlay (1868-95). The only medieval feature is the stone-work at the base of the side walls. Embedded in the cross-walls and rising above C18 ceilings are substantial remains of the timber framing of C12 hall. The great hall is one of the grandest and most important of the surviving C12 timber buildings in England. (Herefordshire SMR)

Not scheduled

This is a Grade 2* 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 ReferenceSO510397
Latitude52.0535087585449
Longitude-2.71657991409302
Eastings351000
Northings239700
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved

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Books

  • Goodall, John, 2011, The English Castle 1066-1650 (Yale University Press) p. 27
  • Emery, Anthony, 2000, Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales Vol. 2 East Anglia, Central England and Wales (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) p. 512-14
  • Thompson, M.W., 1998, Medieval bishops' houses in England and Wales (Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing) p. 47, 49, 65, 158, 177
  • Higham, R. and Barker, P., 1992, Timber Castles (Batsford) p. 178, 179
  • Lobel, M.D., 1969, 'Hereford' in Lobel, M.D. (ed), Historic Towns: Maps and Plans of Towns and Cities in the British Isles, with Historical Commentaries, from Earliest Times to 1800 Vol. 1 (London: Lovell Johns-Cook, Hammond and Kell Organization) p. 1-11 online copy
  • RCHME, 1931, An inventory of the historical monuments in Herefordshire Vol. 1: south-west online transcription
  • Garbett, Henrietta L.E., 1910, 'The Palace of Hereford' in Rait, R.S. (ed), English Episcopal Palaces (Province of Canterbury) (London; Constable & Co) p. 255-286 online copy
  • Turner, T.H. and Parker, J.H., 1859, Some account of Domestic Architecture in England (Oxford) Vol. 3 Part 2 p. 377 online copy

Antiquarian

Journals

  • Blair, John, 1987, 'The twelfth-century Bishop's Palace at Hereford' Medieval Archaeology Vol. 31 p. 59-72 online copy
  • Tonkin, J.W., 1976, 'The palaces of the bishop of Hereford' Transactions of the Woolhope Naturalists' Field Club Vol. 42.1 p. 53-64
  • Radford, C.A.R., Jope, E.M. and Tonkin, J.W., 1973, 'The great hall of the bishop's palace at Hereford' Medieval Archaeology Vol. 17 p. 78-87 online copy
  • Powell, H.J., 1963, 'The Bishop's Palace, Hereford' Transactions of the Woolhope Naturalists' Field Club Vol. 37.3 p. 320
  • Jones, E. and Smith, J.T., 1960, 'The great hall of the bishop's palace at Hereford' Medieval Archaeology Vol. 4 p. 69-81 online copy

Other

  • Nico Vaughan and Ron Shoesmith, 2006, The Bishop's Palace, Hereford: archaeological evaluation (Archenfield Archaeology–unpublished report) 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)