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Moated site at Ruxox Farm

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Moated site at Ruxox Farm

List entry Number: 1007780

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County:

District: Central Bedfordshire

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: Flitwick

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 01-May-1952

Date of most recent amendment: 24-Sep-1993

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 20405

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

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 at Ruxox Farm is a good example of a large Bedfordshire moat which is given added significance by its well documented 12th-century religious associations with the Dunstable Priory. Although partially excavated, the monument retains considerable archaeological evidence including stone buildings in the interior.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The monument at Ruxox Farm is a large, 'D'-shaped moated site enclosing an island measuring at least 250m by 160m. The moat was constructed on a natural promontory overlooking the River Flitt. The northern arm follows the contour of the promontory so that the outer berm of the moat is a metre or so lower than the interior. The straight arm of the moat runs over the crest of the promontory on a north-westerly line, beneath the buildings and gardens of Ruxox Farm. The moat ditch is dry and measures 10-15m wide and up to 3m deep. In the fields to the north of the farm the moat has been backfilled, although its line is discernible as slight linear hollows. The island is generally flat but large fragments of stone scattered near the edges of the moat provide visible evidence that stone buildings once occupied the island edge. Excavations in the north-western corner of the site in 1959 uncovered medieval stone walls, pottery, building materials and window glass, proving that there was a substantial and wealthy residence on the site. Roman pottery and tile fragments were also found and these demonstrate that the moat was constructed on top of the remains of a much earlier settlement. The extent of the moat to the north-west is clearly depicted on the 1881 Ordnance Survey 25-inch map. The site is documented as being granted to the priory of Dunstable in the 12th century and became the residence of priors who had resigned from the main order. The farm buildings and the surface of the trackway leading to the river are excluded from the scheduling but the ground beneath them is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of : Volume III, (1912)
Other
CKC 77-88, (1979)
Gardiner, T H, Some Notes on a Trial Excavation......at Ruxox, Flitwick, 1960, Luton Museum Library
LD 88-92, (1953)
Title: Ordnance Survey 25" Series Source Date: 1881 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

National Grid Reference: TL 04784 35978

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1007780 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 11-Dec-2017 at 11:08:27.

End of official listing