Rewiring project at Oxburgh Hall, 28 January 2013

The cords for the orginal servants' bells © Ilana Van Dort

The cords for the orginal servants' bells

Rewiring work this week has resulted in some interesting discoveries. Underneath the floorboards in the South Corridor we have found a number of long, thin cords running the entire length of the corridor.

These cords formed part of a system of bells that were used by family members and guests to summon servants. They were probably in use during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Some of the bells are still on display in the House.

The contractors also discovered a flint-lined circular void beneath the floorboards. We are not yet sure what the purpose - if any - of this void was. Could it have been the site of a well?

Alternatively, could it have been the location of a central fireplace within the medieval Great Hall that once stood there? More prosaically, it may just be a natural void, which was not properly filled when the South Corridor was built in the nineteenth century.

We are open to suggestions!