Hampton Court

  • Hampton Court
  • Hampton Court
  • Hampton Court
  • Hampton Court
  • Hampton Court
  • Hampton Court

First restoration project for the Trust in 1958

Hampton Court

Location: Nelson Street, King’s Lynn

Built: C14th

Project Completed: 1958

Quadrangular complex built between 14th and 17th centuries

The restoration of Hampton Court was the first project undertaken by the King’s Lynn Preservation Trust in 1958.

Hampton Court is a quadrangular building with ranges built between the 14th and 17th centuries. It is located in Nelson Street, close to the heart of the medieval town.

The south range contains the earliest building, built in the early 14th century as a merchant’s hall house, comprising a main living room open to the roof, with a parlour and counting house at one end and a buttery and pantry at the other. The east and west ranges were added in the second half of the 15th century. The western range comprised a two-storey brick warehouse, with arcading on the ground floor opening onto the quayside. The eastern wing fronts the street. It is timber framed and jettied and contained shops with solars above. In the early 17th century the north range was added and the courtyard enclosed. This range probably contained a bakehouse and brewhouse.

Early owners included the Amfles family, whose merchant mark can be seen in the spandrel of the main doorway to the courtyard, and John Hampton, a master baker in the 17th century, after whom the site has been named.

By the 19th century the complex had been subdivided into small dwellings and it continued to fall into a state of decay throughout the first half of the 20th century.

In 1954 the building was bought and saved for the town by Mrs Nora Lane, a local person passionate about King’s Lynn’s architecture and member of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings. She set about restoring the east and west wings.

By 1958 it was clear that a dedicated organisation was needed to complete the restoration and to manage the building. The King’s Lynn Preservation Trust was officially launched on 24 October 1958 at a well-attended event at the Town Hall. Mrs Lane donated the south and north wings to the Trust and a public appeal for funds was launched.

The south and north wings were restored between 1960 and 1962, completing the conversion into attractive flats.

In 1970 Mrs Lane generously transferred the whole complex to the Trust and, a few years later, advocated that the flats be sold on 99 year leases to raise funds for other projects, thus establishing a ‘revolving fund’ for future capital investment.

Today most of the flats are in private ownership (the Trust retains two) and considerate visitors are welcomed into the courtyard to admire its beauty. 

Category: KLPT Projects

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