Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1003341
Date first listed: 16-Jun-1948
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Cotswold (District Authority)
Parish: Upper Slaughter
National Grid Reference: SP 15611 23270
Motte and bailey castle 160m ESE of Lower Farm.
Reasons for Designation
Motte and bailey 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-bailey 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 and bailey 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 or motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. 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of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle.
Despite partial early excavation the motte and bailey castle 160m ESE of Lower Farm survives well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, development, longevity, social and political significance, strategic importance, domestic arrangements, abandonment and overall landscape context.
This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 10 July 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.
The monument includes a motte and bailey castle situated on the summit of a low hill within a meander of the River Eye and in the settlement of Upper Slaughter. The motte survives as a circular flat topped mound of up to 22m in diameter and 2.7m high surrounded by a partially buried outer ditch which excavation showed to be up to 8m wide and 4m deep and to the north and west a 90m long scarp with a flat platform above the river indicating a bailey. Partial excavations in 1877 revealed a well and the footings for a building on the summit of the motte and 12th to 13th century pottery finds.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: GC 179
Legacy System: RSM - OCN
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