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Bayford Court

In the civil parish of Sittingbourne.
In the historic county of Kent.
Modern Authority of Kent.
1974 county of Kent.
Medieval County of Kent.

OS Map Grid Reference: TQ91156400
Latitude 51.34294° Longitude 0.74317°

Bayford Court has been described as a Timber Castle although is doubtful that it was such.

There are earthwork remains.

Description

Low banks extend from the church at Sittingbourne to Bayford Court which is surrounded by a moat, three sides of which remain. Bayford Court may be the fortress which the Danish army built at Middleton in 893. Castle Rough (TQ 96 NW 10) is usually said to be the site of the work, but its form is against this view, and it would seem probable that the lines of work about Bayford Court are more likely to have sheltered Hasten's men (VCH). The moat at Bayford Court is as described by Gould, water-filled but in poor condition. The enclosed area, now a kitchen garden, is full of building debris including flint and ragstone. The low banks shown by Gould are practically destroyed but do not appear to have been of any importance. The present Bayford Court is circa 1700 and later in external appearance but there is half-timbered work internally (F1 CFW 08-JUL-63). (PastScape)
Comments

Bayford Court seems to be a partial square moat with some slight earth banks that do not make any sort of defensive circuit (although they may represent flood defences). Spurell speculated this was the site of a Danish winter war camp. It may be in the C19 the waterways were somewhat different than now and that ships could be drawn up here (a vital characteristic of such camps) but the evidence for that seems slight. It should also be noted that Saxton's 1580 plan shows the moat about an orchard with the house outside the moat.
There seems to be confabulation and confusion between Bayford Court, Bayford Castle (including in earlier pre 2012, version of this record) and, to slightly lesser extent, Castle Rough.
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This record last updated before 1 February 2016

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