Moated site at Wood Hall Farm
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1007615
Date first listed: 09-Sep-1993
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: South Staffordshire (District Authority)
National Grid Reference: SJ 84874 04392
Reasons for Designation
Around 6,000 moated sites are known in England. They consist of wide ditches,
often or seasonally water-filled, partly or completely enclosing one or more
islands of dry ground on which stood domestic or religious buildings. In some
cases the islands were used for horticulture. The majority of moated sites
served as prestigious aristocratic and seigneurial residences with the
provision of a moat intended as a status symbol rather than a practical
military defence. The peak period during which moated sites were built was
between about 1250 and 1350 and by far the greatest concentration lies in
central and eastern parts of England. However, moated sites were built
throughout the medieval period, are widely scattered throughout England and
exhibit a high level of diversity in their forms and sizes. They form a
significant class of medieval monument and are important for the understanding
of the distribution of wealth and status in the countryside. Many examples
provide conditions favourable to the survival of organic remains.
The monument at Wood Hall Farm survives particularly well, and represents a good example of a moated site.
The monument includes a single rectangular platform surrounded by a moat. The
island measures 34m square and is slightly raised. Stone blocks are present
beneath the outer edge of the platform. These are visible where a modern
cutting exists at the south-west corner of the island. Two arms of the moat,
the south and east sides, are waterfilled and survive up to 12m wide and 3m
deep. The north and west arms, now infilled, remain visible as depressions in
the ground. There is a slight outer bank on the south arm of the moat which
is lined by mature trees. At the south west corner is a small pond measuring
21m by 19m. Although partially infilled, the pond remains waterlogged. It is
connected to the moat by a narrow inlet channel 1m wide and 6.5m long. A
modern drain has been cut into the north east corner of the pond.
The site of Wood Hall formerly belonged to the Deane family, who are recorded
as owners during the reign of Edward II.
The brick outbuilding on the western edge of the platform, and the surfaces of
the paths, at the northern edge of the site and on the platform, are excluded
from the scheduling, but the ground beneath these features is included.
MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: 21501
Legacy System: RSM
Books and journals
Johnstone, H, The Victoria History of the County of Staffordshire, (1908), 362
Larkham, P J, 'South Staffordshire Archaeological and Historical Society' in Moated Sites in South Staffordshire, , Vol. 24, (1983)
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