(OS 1:10000 a TL 08 NE, b TL 08 SE, c TL 18 NW, d TL 18 SW)
The elongated parish, covering 540 hectares, lies close
to the old Huntingdonshire boundary. It is on generally
flat land between 150 ft. and 215 ft. above OD. Almost
the entire parish is on Boulder Clay.
The only monument of note is the elaborate moated
gardens (3) which were probably laid out in the late 16th
or early 17th century, perhaps on an older medieval
Medieval and Later
ab(1) Moat (TL 08878498; Fig. 65) now completely destroyed, lay W. of the church on Boulder Clay at 225 ft. above
O.D. No details are known. Fig. 65 is based on OS Record
ab(2) Settlement remains (TL 090852; Fig. 65), formerly
part of Hemington village, lie S. of the main village street on
either side of the road to the now isolated church. The remains
suggest that the village has moved away from its original site
in a N.E. direction but when this occurred is not known. It
had certainly taken place by the 18th century (NRO, map of
Hemington and Kingsthorpe, 1716).
The earthworks, now mutilated and slight, consist mainly of
shallow ditches and scarps, in generally rectangular areas, which
were formerly crofts or closes. Only one house site can be
identified ('a' on Fig. 65); it consists of a well-marked rectangular depression near the N.W. end of a small close.
a(3) Moat and garden remains (TL 095852; Fig. 66) lie at
the E. end of the village, on Boulder Clay at 225 ft. above OD.
They surround the remnants of Beaulieu Hall, an early 17th-century building, which is the only surviving fragment of a
large manor house belonging to the Montagu family who acquired the Manor in 1540. On the evidence of extant remains,
the site may have been occupied by a moated manor house in
the medieval period when it was owned by Ramsey Abbey.
However, the Montagus appear to have enlarged and adapted
the older watercourses to form an elaborate garden, probably
contemporaneously with work on the existing building. By
1713 the site was abandoned, the greater part of the house
having been pulled down in about 1618 (VCH Northants., III
Fig. 65 Hemington (1 and 2) Moat and settlement remains
The site, covering about 3 hectares and roughly trapezoidal
in shape, was originally completely surrounded by a ditch.
Where remaining the ditch is up to 12 m. wide and 1.5 m.
deep, but much of its E. side has been destroyed. This ditch is
probably the original medieval moat. The manor house stood
centrally with its main elevation facing S.W., and extensive
foundations discovered in the garden of the surviving part of
the house (OS Record Cards) indicate that it formerly extended
to the S.E. Immediately S.W. of the house are two very low
enclosures, surrounded by shallow ditches only 0.3 m. deep,
and to judge from their form and position they may have been
formal flower-beds fronting the house. Beyond this, and
further to the S.W., is a broad flat area extending to the outer
ditch, here bounded by a low bank only 1 m. high. This area
has been under cultivation at some time and minor features
may have been destroyed. S. of the manor house, a long ditch
or canal, 15 m. wide and up to 2 m. deep, and still partly waterfilled, is set at an angle to the outer boundary ditch and may
be an early 17th-century feature enclosing the garden on that
side. E. of the house is a broad area of land with no identifiable
features on it, except in the S.E. corner where several rectangular depressions perhaps represent the remains of medieval
(4) Cultivation remains. The date of the enclosure of the
common fields of the parish is not known, but it apparently
took place in two stages in about 1650 (J. Bridges, Hist. of
Northants., II (1791), 399; NRO, map of Hemington 1716).
Ridge-and-furrow of the former common fields remains, or
can be traced on air photographs, around and S. of Hemington
Lodge (TL 098844 and 092840) and N.W. and W. of the village
(TL 095854 and 105858) in the form of end-on and interlocked
furlongs mainly of reversed-S type. (RAF VAP 541/143, 3198–
b(5) Enclosures (TL 091840). Air photographs (not seen by
RCHM) apparently show some rectangular enclosures in this
area (BNFAS, 6 (1971), 14).