On the Basing House Facebook page today, an great find has been reported. The fireplace is only a few metres away from the location of the planned summer excavation. So we’re very excited about the discovery of the beautiful object!
The story and images in this post come from the Basing House Facebook page, and the Basing House blog. Please visit and register with these sites to keep up to date with Hampshire County Council Museums Service Basing House news.
Fireplace Found at Basing House
Hampshire County Council’s Keeper of Archaeology Dave Allen tells of a new, surprising discovery: “In consolidating brickwork and preparing the location for a ‘viewing platform’ on top of the Citadel bank at Basing House, workmen have revealed a decorated stone fireplace which last saw use in October 1645. Like the rest of Basing House the fireplace is seriously damaged, but it does represent one of the few locations where decorative stone is still in situ, reminding us of just how ornate William Paulet’s mansion once was. When Basing House fell to Oliver Cromwell’s army in 1645, Parliament said that people could use it as a quarry for brick and stone, and this they did – quite thoroughly. When excavations took place a hundred years ago, the excavators (Lord Bolton’s gardeners) built walls to prop up and support the ruins and it was one of these that hid the fireplace. Discussions will take place as to whether or not the fireplace can be conserved and protected sufficiently to allow it to remain on display.”