CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Surrey Life today CLICK HERE

Uncovering buried treasures at Woking Palace

PUBLISHED: 12:34 11 November 2009 | UPDATED: 16:13 20 February 2013

RARE Valencian tiles were just one of the finds uncovered by archaeologists carrying out excavations at the ruins of Woking Palace over the summer

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine October 2009


RARE Valencian tiles were just one of the finds uncovered by archaeologists carrying out excavations at the ruins of Woking Palace over the summer.


Armed with trowels, hand-shovels and buckets, people from the local community joined Surrey County Council and Surrey Archaeological Society for the dig.


Finds of coins show that the site was already occupied in the early 13th century, well before the first written record of buildings, says Rob Poulton, manager of Surrey County Councils archaeological unit. The most interesting finds from the site were elegantly patterned blue and white tiles from the 15th century, which were imported from Valencia in Spain an extremely rare discovery in England.


The excavations were a great success. Almost 200 people participated in a variety of roles on the dig, and 500 visited on the open day.


Making this important part of their heritage better known to the residents of Woking was a key aim of the dig and the results have shown what a wealth of history lies beneath the ground there.


A manor house was first recorded on the Woking Palace site, just off Carters Lane, in 1271. It was granted to Lady Margaret Beaufort, mother of King Henry VII, in 1464 before being rebuilt as a palace in 1508. The following year, the palace was passed to Henry VIII, who along with his second wife Anne Boleyn had a major rebuilding programme carried out on the site in 1533 and 1534. Woking Palace has been designated a scheduled ancient monument of national importance by English Heritage.


The Friends of Woking Palace, which was formed in 2003, have said that the archaeological excavations taking place this year are just the beginning of a scheduled three-year programme, which will reveal a much more complete picture of how Henry VII transformed the manorial site into a favourite residence, and its subsequent development.



  • The findings from the dig will be revealed as part of the Royals and Revolutions lecture series at the Surrey History Centre in Woking on Saturday November 28. For more information, call 01483 518737.

More from Surrey Life

10:53

From Santa’s Grottos, to Victorian Christmas markets and late-night shopping, we’ve covered what’s on in Surrey this season

Read more
10:47

Whether you're looking for fine dining, pub grub or exotic dishes, eating out in Surrey has something for everyone. Here's our guide to the best local restaurants and pubs

Read more

Having bloomed in Brighton’s restaurant scene over the past decade, The Chilli Pickle opened its second site in Guildford this summer

Read more
Yesterday, 14:32

Historic Royal Palaces and IMG have announced that Kylie Minogue is the first headliner confirmed for Hampton Court Palace Festival 2019. These will be her only London shows of summer 2019. Here’s how you can get tickets

Read more
Yesterday, 12:56

Enjoy this linear rail to ramble section of the Thames Down Link route taking the short train-ride from Box Hill & Westhumble to Ashtead before walking back

Read more
Yesterday, 12:13

Great things to do in Surrey this weekend (16, 17 and 18 November): art exhibitions, walks, concerts, theatre, places to visit and other events and ideas.

Read more
Friday, November 9, 2018

We round up 10 of the most beautiful photos of Surrey shared on Instagram this week…

Read more
Tuesday, November 6, 2018

It’s that time of year when our beautiful countryside is alight with the colours of autumn. Here, we pick out some of her favourite spots to enjoy the seasonal splendour – as well as some perfect places for a post-walk refresher

Read more
Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Found on the stretch of the River Thames between Weybridge and East Molesey, Sunbury-on-Thames is blessed with a village feel where it meets the water. From antique hunts to the joys of river life, here are a few of our favourite reasons to visit

Read more
Monday, November 5, 2018

Verity & Violet are Loui and Jess – a singing duo from Surrey who specialise in blending vintage classics with modern favourites. The two have achieved success in the capital, but are now hoping to attract an audience closer to home

Read more
Friday, November 2, 2018

With the Christmas celebrations seemingly starting earlier every year, it all feels a little too ‘soon’ sometimes, but what if you want to look your best for Christmas & New year celebrations and are considering having cosmetic non-surgical procedures? The Bella Vou Pantiles Clinic offers surgical and non-surgical cosmetic procedures and treatments from a purpose-built private clinic in the heart of Royal Tunbridge Wells

Read more
Thursday, November 1, 2018

Living in England’s most densely wooded county, it’s always a pleasure to witness Surrey donning its autumn finery. Here’s some of the best places to do just that - plus a few pub pit stops to enjoy on route!

Read more
Wednesday, October 31, 2018

We are regularly reminded of the high cost of housing with statistics revealing that only one in three millennials will be able to afford their own home during their lifetime and that most will remain in the category known as Generation Rent

Read more
Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Year 5 pupils at Reigate St Mary’s School (RSM) who designed and carried out a community project as part of a UK wide Make a Difference Challenge, have won the London area competition for their stunning scrapbook record of their project

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest


Follow us on Twitter


Like us on Facebook

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Property Search