Moated site 60m north-east of Little Onn Hall


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Stafford (District Authority)
Church Eaton
National Grid Reference:
SJ 84030 15634

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 moated site near Little Onn Hall survives well and includes upstanding building remains. The monument is a good example of a medieval moated site which has been incorporated into a 19th century ornamental garden.


The monument includes a rectangular moated site and fish stews 60m north-east of Little Onn Hall, Church Eaton. The waterfilled moat, up to 12m wide and 2m deep, is stone-lined with a cobbled base. The moat is divided into two sections by entrances across the west and east arms. The west entrance to the island is a stone-built causeway. A narrow stone bridge, 1.5m wide, forms the eastern access. There is a stone overflow channel at the base of the bridge which connects the two sections of the moat. The south-east corner of the moat projects east to form a small pond. The island has dimensions of 42m north-south by 50m east-west. There is upstanding masonry at the north-west edge of the island, the ashlar walling including a small window opening with splayed jambs. Outside the moat, to the south-west, are two small waterfilled fish stews or breeding tanks, also stone-lined with a cobbled base. An estate map of 1833 provides an indication of the original layout of the moated site prior to its incorporation within the landscaped ornamental garden which was designed by Mawson and laid out between 1870 and 1875. The site is thought to have been held by the Lords of the Manor of Penkridge until at least 1609; it has also been described as part of the barony of Stafford. The surfaces of the garden paths around the external perimeter of the moat and on the platform and the extension to the east of the upstanding masonry at the north-west edge of 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. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
The Estates Of Henry Crockett, (1833)
The Victoria History of the County of Staffordshire, (1958), 92
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

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