SHALDFORD CAMERA​, ​BERKSHIRE; (NHLE10053781303413)

REFERENCES

Ditchfield, P H and Page, William (1907) Victoria County History of Berkshire Volume 2, 88-89

Larking, L.B. and Kemble, J.M. (1857)  The Knights Hospitallers in England  Camden Society, 3-6

OS plot of 1873

​The remains of the Shaldford Camera  (SU55826527) lie about 8km east of Newbury and at the north end of the village of Brimpton. They form part of the Manor Farm complex and consist of a Grade II* Listed Chapel, dedicated to St Leonard, and two sections of water filled moat.

The moat cannot be conclusively associated with the Hospitaller site and an enclosure or court (curtilagio) is not mentioned in the 1338 Extent. However, the moat is depicted on the earliest OS maps for the area and a moat or earthwork enclosure is a feature at some other sites. 

The main surviving feature of the Shaldford Camera is the chapel. This is basically a 12th century building of coursed flint with stone dressings of the 14th century. The north door has  a tympanum with scalloping and a maltese cross. To the east of this is a single lancet, now blocked. The south elevation is broadly similar though the single light is of the 14th century and both it and the door are blocked. The east end has three, stepped cusped ogee lights, also of 14th century date. The north door was clearly the main entrance and indicates in which direction the main buildings lay.

The history of Shaldford Camera has been made complicated by the fact that it is sometimes referred to as the Hospitallers' property at Brimpton, while from 1276 it became a member of the preceptory at Greenham. In the 1338 Extent it is referred to as Shaldeford  and this is the form used here. The history of the Greenham Preceptory and its members is dealt with in Volume 2 of the VCH for Berkshire. A preceptory was founded at Shaldford some time before 1198 but by 1276 its status was reduced to that of a camera.

SHALDFORD CAMERA 1338

The 1338 Extent refers to Shaldeford - membrum de Grenham  and describes the house as being in poor repair. It also lists, in addition to the usual sources of revenue, a watermill and a dovecot. ​The only reference in the Reprise that specifically refers Shaldeford  is a stipend for a chaplain to serve in the chapel (capellam) ​ there.

The camera ​was suppressed in 1540.

SHALDFORD CAMERA; archaeology

SHALDFORD CAMERA; documents

The other main feature of interest is the remains of the moat which lie in two inter-linked sections to the north and west of the chapel. The section to the north, aligned east-west, is about 80m long and 10m wide. At its west end the second section extends 40m to the south.