An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in the County of Cambridgeshire, Volume 1, West Cambridgshire. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1968.
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The village of Orwell takes its name from a spring about 150 yds. S.W. of the church at the foot of Toot Hill, a spur from a chalk ridge which runs parallel to and N. of the river Rhee. On an estate map of c. 1680 (now in C.U.L.) a mound is shown between the spring and the church on an approximately square parcel of some 1½ acres inscribed 'Lordship' (Plate 113). This mound, which may have been a small motte, was levelled c. 1883 to make way for a school. From this nucleus High Street runs E. for about 650 yds. to the parish boundary, with two further springs in line along it. A second street called Town Green Road, leading S.S.W. from the church to a brook which is a tributary of the Rhee, represents the W. side of a green some 550 yds. long. This green had already been reduced in size by 1680, a 'Camping Close' about 130 yds. by 80 yds. and some smaller enclosures having been made at the N. end; the remainder was divided up at the general enclosure by act of 1836 (Plate 113). Back Street, the N. continuation of which is comparatively modern, and some minor lanes and paths lie in the angle between the former green and High Street.
The parish, containing 2083 acres, varies from chalk, rising to 240 ft., through gault to the river which flows at 50 ft. above O.D. at the point where it leaves the parish. The shape is irregular and parts of the lands of two lost settlements, Wratworth at the N. end and Malton in the S.E., have been absorbed (see also Wimpole (19)). These adjustments may account for the unusual field system (see Monument (42) Cultivation Remains below).
Malton, not separately mentioned before 1200 (Reaney, 'The Place-names of Cambs.', 79), is no doubt a pre-Conquest settlement. Later the manor formed part of the estates of the Tyrell family which extended also into the neighbouring parish of Shepreth. It was acquired from the Tyrells by the Lady Margaret Beaufort and given to Christ's College in 1505–6. Malton Farm (Monument (24)) is a 15th-century house, remodelled in 1509–11, for whose history there is an unusual measure of documentation (Christ's College Muniments; building accounts 1509–11 in St. John's College). Between those dates Malton church, the last traces of which have recently been obliterated, was pulled down except for the chancel; as were also 'certen houses not necessarie'. Total expenditure at Malton for the period was £59. 6s. 8d. out of a grand total of £269. 10. 8d. disbursed by Christ's. The foundress had intended that the Malton house should be used as a refuge 'so that the said masters and scholars may resort thither, and there to tarry in time of contagious sickness at Cambridge and exercise their learning and studies'. Later the college appear to have built themselves a more ambitious retreat nearby which was demolished during the mastership (1609–22) of Dr. Valentine Carey (C.A.S. Publs. LIII (1935), 107). No certain traces of this building remain. By Cole's day the chancel of Malton church which had served in the interim as a chapel, was 'employed to profane uses' (B.M. Add. MS. 5823, 125).
Opportunity has been taken of the existence of the map of c. 1680 and of a number of contemporary probate inventories (in C.U. archives) to relate the houses and closes, marked on the map with names of their occupiers, to details of the accommodation contained in the inventories. The results, limited but of some interest, are described under Monuments (3), (7) and (8).
Orwell, like its neighbour Barrington, produces clunch of good quality. The site of an extensive pit at N.G. TL 364506 is described on the map of c. 1680 as 'Quarriehill Furlong'. In addition to the church, Monuments (5), (10), (17), (22) and (30) are examples of the use of clunch, probably local, in the buildings of the village.
Post-enclosure dwellings and other buildings in Orwell call for little comment, except for three (Monuments (2), (19) and (23)) put up in 'cottage gothic' on ground allotted to John Bendyshe and closely resembling one described in the inventory of Barrington (Monument (19)) where the Bendyshes had their seat.
b(1) Parish Church of St. Andrew (Plate 116) stands on sharply rising ground on the N.W. edge of the modern village; the churchyard, which has been extended to the N. and E., is bounded on the S. by a retaining wall, part of which has an old stone coping. The structure, consisting of a Chancel with Sacristy, Nave with Aisles and S. porch and West Tower, is of fieldstones, clunch rubble and freestone but includes some reused material; dressings are of freestone and clunch; the roofs are covered with tiles and lead.
The oldest parts of the existing fabric are the lower stages of the tower and the adjoining two W. quoins of an aisleless 12th-century nave; there are indications of a third, S.E., angle of this nave at the junction of the chancel and S. aisle. The N. and S. arcades with their aisles were built, probably in that order, at the end of the 13th and the beginning of the 14th centuries; the tower was buttressed and increased in height in the 13th century. The chancel with a sacristy was rebuilt c. 1398, at the expense of Richard Anlaby, rector during the previous decade, to the memory of Sir Simon Burley, who had been impeached and executed in 1388. He had been lord of the manor of Orwell and tutor to the youthful Richard II. The evidence is discussed below with the description of the chancel roof. This roof and possibly the head stops of the chancel windows are all that now remain of what must have been an elaborate iconography.
The N. aisle was rebuilt at an unknown date during the first half of the 19th century. There was a restoration in 1860, and another in 1883 under the direction of William White at a cost of £949, when the chancel was virtually rebuilt.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (40¼ ft. by 18 ft.), of c. 1398, has an E. window, of five cinque-foiled lights with vertical tracery, largely modern except for the splays and rear arch. In the N. wall are two, and in the S. wall three, uniform windows, each of three cinque-foiled lights with an embattled transom, having vertical tracery in four-centred heads; the internal labels have inclined head stops of comparatively high quality (Plate 117). These windows are largely restored externally. Towards the E. end of the N. wall is a doorway with continuous moulded jambs and head, leading into the sacristy; this has an E. window of a single cinque-foiled light. Between the sacristy entrance and the first window is a second, blocked, opening resembling a small doorway. The chancel arch is of two wave-moulded orders to the W. beneath a moulded label with mask stops; to the E. the orders are chamfered.
The Nave (44¾ ft. by 20¼ ft.) has arcades of four bays with arches of two chamfered orders rising off quatrefoil piers with moulded caps and bases and responds uniform with their respective piers. The caps and bases of the N. arcade have a different profile from those of the S. arcade; the moulded label towards the nave mitres over the piers and has mask stops at the ends; there are rolls between the pier foils. The S. arcade has head stops (Plate 116) over the piers and responds, and the foils are separated by small double rolls with intervening hollows. In the E. end of the N. wall of the nave is a blocked upper doorway to the rood loft. The clearstorey has three symmetrically disposed restored windows on each side, of two cinque-foiled lights with a quatrefoil in the head; late 14th- or 15th-century.
The South Aisle(7¼ ft. wide) is said to have been rebuilt with the porch in 1883 (Ely Diocesan Remembrancer 1896, 117), but much of the original walling remains. Three windows in the long wall, each of three cinque-foiled lights with vertical tracery in four-centred heads, include a little old work. In the W. wall is a restored 14th-century window of two trefoiled ogee lights with net tracery and a moulded label. The S. doorway, of two continuous chamfered orders, is also 14th-century. The E. wall is blind. In the angle between the aisle and the chancel, visible externally, is a projecting stone, presumably part of a coping, the slope of which reproduces that of the roof of the 12th-century nave. The S. porch has restored and reset 14th-century windows in the side walls, each of two trefoiled lights with pierced and cusped spandrels in the heads. The outer order of the entrance archway may also be old on the inside.
The West Tower (13 ft. square) is in three storeys with three-stage angle buttresses at the W. corners rising to the embattled parapet. Clasping the E. ends of the N. and S. walls are the quoins of the 12th-century nave, worked as attached angle shafts with cushion caps; above the caps in each case are short lengths of moulded string-course. There are lancets in the N. and S. walls of the ground stage, the former blocked. Immediately W. of the S. lancet is a blocked doorway. The 16th- or 17th-century W. window is of three lights with mullions and a transom and has a four-centred head and moulded label. In the second storey are small lancets to the N., W. and S., the last masked externally by a clock dial. The top storey is arcaded on the W. and S. The treatment of the N. and E. faces is plain and there is a two-light window in each, that to the E. being set higher, apparently to allow for a roof ridged at a higher level than the existing one. The arcading of the W. and S. faces is in three bays each, the side bays blind and the middle bay framing a two-light window with a quatre-foiled head; the arches are enriched with dog-tooth and rose off shafts the eroded caps of which, with slight suggestion of corresponding bases, survive. A string below the parapet has a gargoyle to the S. The tower arch is of three chamfered orders on chamfered responds having semi-octagonal attached shafts with moulded caps and bases.
The Roof of the chancel (Plate 114), of wagon form in five slopes, is boarded and arbitrarily divided into eleven times six approximately square panels by moulded ribs with alternate carved bosses and painted shields at the intersections. It was reconstructed by the Rev. John Colbatch, incumbent between 1723 and 1748, possibly at the suggestion of Cole who visited the church in 1743. Cole's blazon differs materially from earlier ones by Richard St. George (d. 1635; B.M. Lansdowne MS. 863) and by John Layer (d. 1640; C.A.S. Publs., LIII (1935), 59 and 71–2, etc.). The original scheme has been further confused, although certain shields may have been correctly restored, by a repainting carried out in 1883, partly on the basis of a MS. in Wimpole Hall: six modern coats including that of Trinity College, the patrons, were then substituted for older ones, and one or two others transposed. Layer also described the original glass which survived till his day in the chancel windows, including a mutilated inscription asking prayers for the soul of Richard Anlaby, rector, at whose expense the fabric had been erected. Anlaby probably died in or about 1396. The windows contained several shields of Burley, two differenced and labelled 'Roger' and 'William Burley'; there were also shields of Mowbray, Vere, Lovell(?), Holland and Scales, and these with others appear in the most authentic accounts of the roof. The allusion is evidently to Sir Simon Burley, lord of Orwell manor which had come into the family by marriage with the Pembridges. Burley, one of the three magistri charged with the care of the young Richard II, was impeached and beheaded in 1388. The most probable date for the erection of the chancel is 1398, when following on the execution of the Duke of Gloucester and the Earl of Arundel in the previous year, Burley's sequestered estates were released, some being made over to Roger Burley who was his heir, while others seem to have been set aside for obituary purposes (e.g. Calendar of Close Rolls, 1396–1399 (1909), 349, etc; Calendar of Patent Rolls, 1396–1399 (1927), 348 and 384). Something of the sort evidently happened here; there are heraldic indications that a small chantry set up earlier in the century by Margaret, relict of (Robert ?) Kendall (E. Carter, The History of the County of Cambridge (1819), 249) was re-endowed for the purpose. The bosses (Plate 115) with which the shields are interspersed, most with traces of old colour and gilding, include four of large size and high quality below the ridge; these are all of bareheaded half effigies, secular in character, the first, at least, apparently female; missing adjuncts are suggested by the posture of the hands some of which are pierced as though holding standards, and by slots and peg holes in the backgrounds or in the cusped and foliated frames; smaller bosses include lion masks, single and multiple heads, two with mitres, and an unidentified heraldic flower. This last is repeated as a patera applied to the ribbing between all intersections.
Fittings—Bells: five; 1st by Charles Newman, 1694, recast in 1931; 2nd, 1616; 3rd by Miles Graye, 1665; 4th, 1615; 5th by Toby Norris, 17th-century.Brass indents: in chancel—on N. side (1) half figure of cleric with attached inscription plate, invocation scroll and prayer picture, second half of 14th century or c. 1400; on S. side (2) of rectangular inscription plate, probably late mediaeval. Clock: in tower, with wrought-iron frame, apparently a modern remodelling of a 17th-century one which is said to have come c. 1740 from Trinity College. Coffin lids: In chancel—N. of high altar (1) tapered, of freestone with incised cross elaborately foliated at head and waist, and with stepped base; S. of high altar (2) uniform with foregoing, but with palimpsest inscription— see Floor slab (1) below; 14th-century. In S. porch—E. side (3) fragment carved with interlace and part of a Maltese cross, Saxo-Norman; W. side (4) upper part, tapered, with cross having Maltese head and omega on shaft, 12th-century. Communion table: with turned legs, plain lower and shaped upper rail, 17th-century. Doors: to sacristy from chancel (1) of vertical planking, extended and refronted, c. 1398; (2) and (3) of N. and S. aisles respectively, each of six ovolo-moulded panels, 18th-century. Font: 12th-century cylindrical bowl of freestone, with later mediaeval cylindrical clunch stem having moulded cap and base.Glass: a few yellow-stain fragments in second window on N. side of chancel, late mediaeval. Locker: in S. wall of sacristy, with rebated jambs and continuous two-centred head, the lower part now accommodating a safe, c. 1398.
Monuments and Floor slabs. Monuments: In chancel—on N. wall (1) of Wulfran Stubbe (d. 1719) n.d., Rector and Master of Trinity College, inscription panel of veined marble with flanking pilasters, pediment surmounted by an achievement of arms, and apron; on S. wall (2) of Jeremias Radcliffe, 1623, Rector and Vice-Master of Trinity College, of painted clunch; in a recess flanked by Ionic pilasters and with four-centred head is a frontal half effigy of the deceased, hands folded in prayer; above him is a shield of arms between two books, and there are further shields of arms in foliated spandrels below the frieze, either side of a base inscription panel and adorning the shaped apron; the pilasters are enriched with strapwork and there is a strapwork overthrow with central panel bearing the date 1623; the frieze and base panel are painted with inscriptions, the former with a Latin elegiac quatrain. In N. aisle on N. wall (3) of Edward Cannon, 1700/11 round-headed panel with inscription in crude cursive. In churchyard—S. of chancel (4) of John Wootton, 1682 (Plate 15), shaped and carved head and foot stones into which is framed a cambered slab carved with a skeleton; (5) without legible inscription, but probably of James Wootton, 1701, similar to foregoing but smaller and less well preserved; E. of chancel (6) probably of John Wootton, 1704, similar but slab missing; also fragments of further 17th-century and some 18th-century memorials. Floor slabs: In chancel, S. of high altar (1) of Honor Wootton, 1694, palimpsest on Coffin lid (2); (2) of Silvester Martin, 1676; (3) of Ambrose Aglionby, 1651, with shield of arms; (4) of Thomas Butler, 1658; (5) of John Colbatch, 1748, rector, with achievement of arms; (6) of Charles Mason, 1770, rector, with shield of arms; (7) of James Law, 1846, and his wife Hannah, 1840; (8) of John Henry Renouard, 1830, Vice-Master of Trinity, and his sister Rachel Elizabeth Renouard, 1822, by Gilbert of Cambridge. In N. aisle, partly masked by seating, (9) of Mary Hunt, 1756 and her husband William Hunt, 1775. In S. aisle (10) of Ann Watts or Walls, 1826. Piscina: in chancel with depressed ogee cinque-foiled head beneath a crocketed and finialed label, moulded jambs and projecting drain with moulded fore edge, c. 1398. Plate: includes an inscribed alms dish, London 1741. Pulpit: with front of three sides each of two fielded panels, first half of 18th century. Recesses: In chancel, N. of high altar (1) with moulded jambs, projecting trefoiled head and label with crockets, spires and a finial, heavily whitewashed, apparently restored or modern. At E. end of S. aisle (2) with moulded jambs and ogee trefoiled head, label cut back, traces of colour; early 14th-century. Reredos: fragment, now in Recess (2) above, of clunch with figure of Christ crucified and of St. John, traces of original colour (Plate 13); set in the opening for a stoup, immediately E. of S. door, are further fragments of an architectural surround possibly corresponding to the figures, elaborately carved with foliage beneath a length of embattled cornice; both mid to late 14th-century. Royal Arms: in S. aisle, of James II, dated 1686, on canvas in moulded frame. Scratching: extensive inscription on E. splay of doorway from chancel to sacristy, obscured by whitewash, late mediaeval. Seating: in N. aisle, five benches and a front incorporate some old ends and other late mediaeval material. Stalls: in chancel, eight on either side with corresponding desks having ends rising to finials; the stalls themselves have shaped and moulded divisions and capping; eleven simply carved misericords; late mediaeval. Table: with turned legs and shaped brackets to top rail,late 17th-century.
b(2) House (Class L), two-storeyed, stucco perhaps over clunch, in a cottage idiom with wooden casement windows, thatched roofs gabled and dormered, and a prominent chimney stack in white brick at the junction of the two ranges terminating in four conjoined flues. The N. gable end of the shorter range, facing the street, is dated 1841. The plot was allotted to John Bendyshe under the enclosure act of 1836.
b(3) House, T-shaped, two-storeyed, framed and plastered, with tiled and gabled roofs, mid or late 17th-century. A chimney at the junction of the main range and S. cross wing has a rebuilt stack of three diagonal shafts.
Framing exposed inside is rather light and rough. Most of the ground floor of the cross wing is occupied by a room with ceiling divided into two larger and two smaller bays by intersecting ogee-moulded and stopped beams, apparently of soft wood. From a probate inventory of Richard Barnard of 1694 it would appear that this was the 'parlour'. W. of it is a stair.
b(4) House, originally L-shaped, with main N. and S. range open to the roof and N. cross wing of two storeys, framed and plastered, with tiled roofs, 17th-century. In the late 17th or 18th century the main range was heightened and divided into two storeys; at the same time an annexe was built beyond the cross wing.
b(5) House, a long framed and plastered range, perhaps originally open, now with attic in the thatched roof and three dormers two of which are gabled and tiled, facing the former green. Of two end chimneys that on the N.E. is clunch built. There is a modern two-storey extension at the S.W. end. The house may have originated as a special-purpose building of the 17th or 18th century.
d(6) Store, perhaps a granary, two-storeyed, framed and boarded, with tiled and gabled roof, in two bays with jetty to the N.E. The scantling is heavy and the structure is probably 16th-century. The main truss has a tie beam, with arch braces to the corresponding posts, and a collar. The roof has wind braces.
b(7) House and Barn on the S.E. side of a green, now enclosed. The House, L-shaped, two-storeyed, framed and plastered, with thatched roofs, of 16th-century origin extensively modernised. The roof spaces were not examined.
The main range, which is gabled and jettied at the N.W. end towards the now enclosed green, was extended to the S.E. in the 17th century and ends in a half hip; the internal chimney is coeval with this extension. The secondary range, at right angles, was detached until comparatively recent times and has a jetty and gable to the N.E. The plan is unusual and may reflect a special purpose.
Vertical studwork is exposed on the outside, and a number of structural timbers are visible within. The subsidiary range is in two bays with shaped haunches carrying a stop-chamfered cross beam on the ground floor; above this on the upper floor is a sharply cambered tie beam supported by, and formerly braced to, posts with enlarged heads.
Probate inventories in Cambridge University archives include one of John Godfrey, 1700, who must have lived here. He was perhaps a coal merchant, as the subsidiary range is described as a 'coal house' and contained 30 bushels of coal; the chamber over had a bedstead.
b(8) House (Class J), of one storey with attic, framed and plastered, with gable-ended roof now clad with asbestos sheeting. Some of the exposed ceiling beams and two fireplace bressummers are stop-chamfered. Evidence from a probate inventory of Elizabeth Adams, 1680, suggests that there was only one upper room at that date.
b(9) Houses, a range of three, plastered over a carefully and solidly constructed frame, with tiled roof; in origin a specialpurpose building, perhaps a warehouse, of the 16th or 17th century; in two storeys and four bays. Conversion seems to have taken place in the mid 19th century. Structural timbers exposed internally include axial, cross and tie beams, posts, wall plates and principal rafters; most if not all of these are carefully chamfered and stopped.
b(10) House (perhaps Class D), late mediaeval, partly of two storeys, partly of one storey and attic, framed and plastered, with some replacement in brick and roofed with sheet metal. The S.E. cross wing is jettied at both ends. A floor and a clunch chimney with diagonal shafted stack of brick were inserted in the hall in the 17th century. The N.W. part of the house has been largely rebuilt.
Inside the cross wing on the ground floor is an 18th-century painted clunch fireplace with panelled side pilasters and lintel, fluted keystone and modillion cornice. Above this remains of a recently discovered painted black-letter inscription 'I goo ... .. But Lorde .....' and border of guilloche and rosettes, have been covered up again. A second area, adjoining the stairs to the S., painted with flowers in a more naturalistic idiom, is also now masked.
b(11) House (Class S), of a single storey and attic, framed and plastered except for the W., chimney, end which is of red brick; to this last is attached a low shed or brew house, also framed and plastered. The roofs are thatched and gabled. The heated room on the ground floor has a 17th-century ovolo-moulded and stopped axial ceiling beam, probably reused, although it is possible that the house, which is of 18th-century plan type, is of 17th-century origin.
b(12) House, formerly that of Town Farm, consisting of a two-storeyed range with half-hipped tiled roof; partly framed and plastered, partly of brick; 17th-century or earlier. Access was refused. A service annexe at right angles to the S.W. side has been reduced in height; a chimney at the junction of this annexe with the range has a tall rectangular stack with a narrow vertical recess in each face.
b(13) Town Farm, buildings, includes a three-bay boarded barn aisled in the middle bay to the S.E. On a post is a carefully executed representation of a post mill and inscription 'IonAnthan M Mulbary 17(65?)'. To the N. is a brick granary with tiled roof, perhaps c. 1800.
b(14) House (Class J), of one storey and attic, framed and plastered, with half-hipped roof covered in sheet metal, 17th-century. The chimney has a diagonal shafted stack in red brick and there are two dormers on the S.E. side towards the road. Some at least of this dwelling was originally open to the roof, as the cross beam and supporting posts in the heated room at the N.E. end are evidently inserted.
b(15) House, apparently that marked 'Town House' on the map of c. 1680, two-storeyed, framed and plastered, with thatched and tiled roofs, gabled and half-hipped. The building which is of mediaeval or 16th-century origin now consists of an E. cross wing, formerly with jetty S. to the street, and an E. and W. range which may at one time have been or included an open hall; but this range has been partly heightened and lengthened or rebuilt on the W. in the 17th or 18th century. In the cross wing is a centre truss with steeply cambered tie beam and short braces to posts with inclined heads.
b(16) Quarry Farm is a 17th-century house, framed and plastered, of Class-J plan-form, two storeyed except the E. part beyond the chimney which is lower and was originally open to the roof. The ground-floor room at the W. end has an ovolo-moulded and stopped axial ceiling beam.
b(17) House, Pigeon House and Wall (Plate 86) on the S. side of High Street. The House, framed and plastered, consisting of an E. and W. main range of a single storey with attic, and a two-storey E. cross wing, is of 16th-century origin. The roofs are partly thatched and partly tiled, gabled to the N., hipped to the S. and half-hipped to the W.
On the N. side of the ground floor in the main range is a chamfered post with ogee stop and the lower part of a corresponding hollow-chamfered brace; these are probably the vestiges of a tie-beam truss between two bays of an open hall. The cross wing is in two bays. On the ground floor some down bracing is visible and the ceiling beam is stop-chamfered. Upstairs, above this last, is a cambered tie beam with arch brace to E. post. The roof has wind braces.
The Pigeon house, to the S., square on plan, framed and plastered, with thatched roof now fully hipped, bears the date '1775' in flint flakes set in the plaster. The nesting boxes are made of clay bat in pre-cast units. The Wall, 94 ft. long, fronting High Street to the E. of the house, of clunch rubble plastered, with a capping of thatch, is probably 19th-century.
b(18) House and Barn along the N. side of High Street, 18th-century. The House (Class 1), now two dwellings, is singlestoreyed with an attic, thatched and gabled. Attached to the W. end of the house is a small aisled Barn, in three bays, boarded and thatched.
b(19) Houses (Plate 33), a pair treated as a single cottage orné, of one storey and attics, framed and plastered, with tiled roof. The design is the same as that of Barrington (19). The building is on a plot allotted to John Bendyshe under the enclosure act of 1836.
b(20) House, consisting of a 19th-century range, framed and plastered, with an E. cross wing jettied at both ends; at the rear of the range are further survivals of an older structure; both perhaps early 17th-century. The S. bedroom of the cross wing retains a short length of original fluted and enriched frieze affixed to the chamfered fireplace bressummer, and there are a few simple 18th-century fitments.
b(21) House, of Class-J plan but jettied at the E. end, two-storeyed, framed and plastered, with thatched gabled roof; 16th- or early 17th-century. Traces of pargetting on the N. front include part of a band of geometrical ornament at first-floor level and a moulded and shaped date or inscription panel, now blank. Inside are chamfered ceiling beams, but none is stopped at both ends; also some swell-headed posts. In the ground-floor room at the E. end exposed joists are stop-chamfered and the corner posts are down-braced.
b(22) West Farm consists of a house and buildings. The mid 18th-century House, of two storeys with some attics, has an original N. front in six bays, of red brick, with sash windows under flat arches and a front door in the fourth bay. The cornice is of moulded brick. The irregular S. elevation and the E. end are faced with later brick.
The Buildings include a mid 18th-century barn of clunch ashlar in nine bays, aisled on the E. side, with thatched roof; a scratching has the initials and date 'VCM 1747'. Others, also clunch built, have been more altered.
d(24) Malton Farm (N.G. TL 373483), consists of a house and buildings in association with a moated site (Monument (41)). These are virtually all that remain of the former village of Malton (see parish introduction).
The House (Class B; N.G. TL 37344830), partly two-storeyed with some attics and partly three-storeyed, is in general framed and plastered and has tiled and slated roofs. It is that of the Manor of Malketon alias Horne's which the Lady Margaret Beaufort acquired from the Tyrell family (C. H. Cooper, Memoir of Margaret Countess of Richmond and Derby (1874), 101, note 2), and gave to Christ's College with other endowments in 1505–6 (J. Peile, Christ's College (1900), 37). The original house was probably put up in the 15th century, perhaps by William Horne (d. 1469) citizen and draper of London, or by his son Thomas. The foundress in her will directed that 'the said manor of Malton . . . should be sufficiently builded and repaired at her cost and charge' (C. A. Halstead, Life of Margaret Beaufort (1839), 248). This was evidently done, as the building accounts in St. John's College mention 'the reparacions . . . upon Tirelles Hall for the fermor to dwell in and upon all the chambers ther to belongenge and the makyng of a new kechyn'. The foreman was John Nicholson who also worked as a carpenter and bricklayer; John Scott, clerk of works, submitted his final account to John Fisher, Bishop of Rochester, who was Lady Margaret's executor, 15 Feb. 1511. The lofty ceiling of moulded beams and stop-moulded joists (Plate 38) inserted in the hall can be safely attributed to the rebuilding of 1510. Its insertion evidently involved the heightening and re-roofing of the range and probably the building of the S.E. chimney. The extensive additions on the S.E. side may in part be coeval, though ostensibly of the 17th and 18th centuries. The S.W. cross wing was remodelled in 1906–7.
The elevations give little indication of the building's architectural character. The front is to the N.W. with doors and windows of the 19th century and later. Jetties to the cross wings have probably been removed. Irregularities in the plaster reflect the dimensions of the hall, including the original eaves.
Inside, the middle ground-floor room on the N.W. is dominated by the ceiling referred to, which is divided by a primary cross beam and axial secondaries, all three richly roll-moulded, into four bays, the mouldings being returned as a cornice applied over the earlier studwork. The roll-moulded joists have leaf stops and frame into this cornice. A passage at the N.E. end of the roof is divided off by a partition on the line of the screens. Four joist lengths at the S.E. extremity of the passage are unmoulded.
The framing on the ground floor of the N.E. cross wing is exposed internally and includes indications of two original windows. The wing is in two and a half bays; the half bay, at the S.E. end, appears to have been designed for a stair, although the stair now in it is modern. The cross beam between the two full bays is morticed for an original partition; of two original doorways with three-centred heads either side of the S.W. end of this beam, that to the S.E. has been blocked while the other has been mutilated. The ceiling joists are of heavy scantling.
A few timbers are exposed in the remaining rooms on the ground floor; a cross beam near the S.E. end of the S.W. cross wing suggests an original jetty. The middle room at the back of the house has a quadripartite ceiling the beams of which are cased.
Upstairs, the N.E. end of the S.E. wall of the hall range is exposed both sides: a rail some 12½ ft. above ground reflects the eaves of the mediaeval hall; the adjacent, E., corner post is spliced at this level, above which the studwork is presumably of 1510. The tie beam of the truss between the two full bays of the N.E. cross wing is cambered and morticed for braces to the posts. The exposed S.W. post is notched on the N.W. side to receive one of the secondary beams of the ceiling inserted into the hall, the moulded end of the beam being also visible. The S.W. wall between the cross wing and the hall range has been strengthened by crude iron bolts which should perhaps also be ascribed to the rebuilding of 1510. The upper room of the cross wing retains an original window at the S.E. end, visible from the outside, divided into four lights by diamond mullions. The room is ceiled at tie-beam level, but the remnants of the mediaeval roof can be seen in the roof space: they include a stop-chamfered crown post braced to the collar purlin and some collars.
The roof of the hall range, raised in 1510 and subsequently reconstructed, retains some ten smoke-blackened rafters and the tie beam of an open truss morticed for a crown post, all doubtless from its 15th-century predecessor; the rafters are halved for collars.
The Buildings include, to the S.W. of the house, two aisled barns, framed, boarded and thatched: one of five bays with porches either side in the middle bay, 17th-century; the other of seven bays with porches in the third and fifth bays on the W., and in the third bay only on the E., 18th-century. Some 40 yds. N.E. of the house is a framed and boarded pigeon house, rather poorly constructed, perhaps 18th-century; no nesting boxes survive. These buildings all have plinths below the frames of red brick and stone, much of which is reused.
b(25–39) Houses. Monuments (26) and (27), the former an inn, are Class-U, two-storeyed, framed and plastered except for the front of (27) which is of white brick, with hipped slated roofs; mid 19th-century. The remainder are probably all internal-chimney houses of the 17th, or in a few cases of the 18th century, Class J greatly predominating; usually of a single storey and attic, framed and plastered, with thatched or in some instances tiled roofs; a number have been reduced or extended in size or otherwise modified. With Monument (30) are some 18th- or 19th-century buildings in clay bat and clunch, also a wrought-iron gate recently reset from Jesus Lane, Cambridge (R.C.H.M., Cambridge, 351, Monument (225)).
b(40) Mound (N.G. TL 36475068; not on O.S.), above the 200 ft. contour line near the summit of Toot Hill, on chalk marl capped with boulder clay. The mound, 60 ft. in diameter and a mere 6 ins. high, now under plough, has a windmill shown on it on the enclosure map of 1837; the relevant furlong was already known as 'Old Mill Hill Furlong' c. 1680 (map in C.U.L.).
d(41) Moated Site (Class A2(a); N.G. TL 373482), consisting of two contiguous rectangular enclosures immediately E. and S. of Malton Farm (Monument (24)), on alluvium with the river Cam forming the longer E. side. The N. moat measures internally 325 ft. N. to S. by 150 ft. with a wet ditch 25 ft. to 30 ft. wide and 5 ft. to 12 ft. deep, now partly filled on the N. and N.W. The entrance was probably on the N. The S. enclosure is 230 ft. N. to S. by 130 ft., with a wet ditch 25 ft. wide and 4 ft. to 7 ft. deep partly filled on the S.W. The ditches are overgrown; the interior of the N. enclosure is a garden and the S. enclosure is a pig run.
(42) Cultivation Remains (not on O.S.). The only remaining ridge and furrow is around the village e.g. at N.G. TL 366503, where it is straight, 130 yds. to 180 yds. long, 7 yds. to 9 yds. wide and 1 ft. high with headlands of 6 yds. to 7 yds. All these remains fit the boundaries of fields which were old enclosures in 1836; and most of these fields had already been enclosed by c. 1680.
The traces visible on air photographs are of curving furlongs of the open fields, best seen around N.G. TL 362517. Here are the remains of an access way called Sloe Croft Balk, a scarp 170 yds. long and 1 ft. high. Two smaller balks, now destroyed, lay 120 yds. to the S.E. Two other access ways can be traced: one is S.E. of New Wimpole around N.G. TL 352495, running S.E. and S. for 400 yds.; the other, called Great Potters Way in 1837, runs parallel to the river from N.G. TL 354482 to 369483.
Before the enclosure of Orwell in 1836 the former parish of Malton to the S. had already been enclosed and united with it. There had been enclosures in Malton of two aratra, probably about 140 acres, before 1517 (W. E. Tate, 'Cambridgeshire Field Systems', C.A.S. Procs. XL (1944), 62; I. S. Leadam, 'The Inquisition of 1517', Royal Hist. Soc. Trans. N. S. VIII (1894), 305). The enclosure map gives five open fields—'High', 'Hill' and 'Oatland' Fields to the N., 'Aycroft' and 'River' Fields to the S. The names of furlongs, closes and some access ways are given on the 17th-century map.