Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1001753
Date first listed: 30-Sep-1935
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This copy shows the entry on 23-Jan-2019 at 13:27:48.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: County of Herefordshire (Unitary Authority)
Parish: Pipe Aston
National Grid Reference: SO 46190 71900
Motte castle 120m east of Pipe Aston Farm.
Reasons for Designation
Motte castles are medieval fortifications introduced into Britain by the Normans. They comprised a large conical mound of earth or rubble, the motte, surmounted by a palisade and a stone or timber tower. In a majority of examples an embanked enclosure containing additional buildings, the bailey, adjoined the motte. Motte castles and motte-and-bai1ey castles acted as garrison forts during offensive military operations, as strongholds, and, in many cases, as aristocratic residences and as centres of local or royal administration. Built in towns, villages and open countryside, motte castles generally occupied strategic positions dominating their immediate locality and, as a result, are the most visually impressive monuments of the early post-Conquest period surviving in the modern landscape. Over 600 motte castles and motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. Some 100-150 examples do not have baileys and are classified as motte castles. As one of a restricted range of recognised early post-Conquest monuments, they are particularly important for the study of Norman Britain and the development of the feudal system. Although many were occupied for only a short period of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle.
The motte castle 120m east of Pipe Aston Farm survives well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, longevity, social, political and strategic significance, domestic arrangements, longevity and overall landscape context.
This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 19 May 2015. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.
This monument includes a motte castle situated in the upper part of a wide valley of a tributary to Allcock’s Brook surrounded by a meander of the watercourse which feeds the wet ditch. The motte survives as a circular flat topped mound measuring up to 44m in diameter and 6m high surrounded by a wet ditch of up to 11m wide and 1.5m deep. The stream feeds into the ditch in the north east and exits at the south west which makes the whole moat somewhat marshy. It is known locally as ‘Aston Tump’. The motte has traces of a polygonal shell keep and a small D-shaped tower on its summit. The castle was built between 1138-9.
Further archaeological remains in the vicinity are not included in the scheduling because they have not been formally assessed.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: HE 79
Legacy System: RSM - OCN
PastScape 108758, Herefordshire SMR 313
This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing