Ancient Monuments

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Dovecote 125m north of Minster Lovell Hall

A Scheduled Monument in Minster Lovell, Oxfordshire

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Latitude: 51.8007 / 51°48'2"N

Longitude: -1.5306 / 1°31'50"W

OS Eastings: 432464.689248

OS Northings: 211444.943248

OS Grid: SP324114

Mapcode National: GBR 6VJ.3TK

Mapcode Global: VHBZV.FZ6Y

Entry Name: Dovecote 125m north of Minster Lovell Hall

Scheduled Date: 4 June 1952

Last Amended: 3 January 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014554

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21803

County: Oxfordshire

Civil Parish: Minster Lovell

Traditional County: Oxfordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Oxfordshire

Church of England Parish: Minster Lovell

Church of England Diocese: Oxford


The monument includes a 15th century dovecote, situated 125m north of the
remains of Minster Lovell Hall.
The dovecote is circular in plan and measures 6.2m across internally. Its
oolite stone walls are 1.2m thick and, including its stone slate roof, it
stands c.5.5m high. The interior walls contain 18 tiers of nest holes and
every row has a perching ledge. Of the 600 nesting holes, those in the bottom
tier have now been blocked.
The dovecote formed part of the economy of the adjacent farm which provided
for the needs of the manor to which they belonged. It is known that the
surviving manor and its associated buildings were built in the early 1400s by
William Lovell, the seventh baron of Tichmarsh. The site had already been home
to the family since at least AD 1100.
The dovecote, which is also a Listed Building Grade II*, is in the care of the
Secretary of State and is open to the public.
Excluded from the scheduling is the stone boundary wall which runs around the
dovecote and falls within its 2m protective margin, although the ground
beneath is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Dovecotes are specialised structures designed for the breeding and keeping of
doves as a source of food and as a symbol of high social status. Most
surviving examples were built in the period between the 14th and the 17th
centuries, although both earlier and later examples are documented. They were
generally freestanding structures, square or circular in plan and normally of
brick or stone, with nesting boxes built into the internal wall. They were
frequently sited at manor houses or monasteries. Whilst a relatively common
monument class (1500 examples are estimated to survive out of an original
population of c.25,000), most will be considered to be of national interest,
although the majority will be listed rather than scheduled. They are also
generally regarded as an important component of local distinctiveness and

The dovecote at Minster Lovell survives well and retains all its interior
features. It is documented as being part of the farm complex associated with
the adjacent manor and provides evidence for this part of the medieval
agricultural economy.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Taylor, A J, Minster Lovell Hall, (1992), 15
Taylor, A J, Minster Lovell Hall, (1992), 3
Old County Number OXON 8, ENGLISH HERITAGE, FILE AA 66263, (1993)
PRN 3175, C.A.O., Dovecote, (1993)

Source: Historic England

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