Cleaving Hall moated site


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Date of most recent amendment:


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

East Riding of Yorkshire (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SE 85254 46034

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 main moated site at Cleaving Hall survives well and will retain evidence of the buildings which stood on it. The attached enclosures have been eroded by agricultural activity but remain visible on aerial photographs; their surrounding ditches survive as a buried feature.


The monument is the moated site known as Cleaving Hall which lies north of Cleaving Grange. It includes a single moated site and the infilled remains of further ditched enclosures which extend from it to both the east and west of the moat. The central island of the moated site is 40m long, north-south, and 30m wide, east-west. The moat which encloses it is 10m wide. The northern and eastern arms are 2m deep; the western and southern arms are more heavily silted and are only 1m deep. A fishpond was constructed on the island at its southern end and remains as a visible earthwork 14m long, east-west, and 8m wide; it is up to 0.75m deep and is connected to the moat at its western end by a short, silted channel. A further possible fishpond may also have existed to the west of the main moat. This is visible only as a slight hollow in the ground surface. A single rectangular ditched enclosure extends to the east of the main moat and two others lie to the west. The ditches which enclose these have been in- filled but are clearly visible on aerial photographs of the site. Infilling occurred before 1930, but the ditches are shown as earthworks on 19th century maps of the area. Two concrete tanks have been dug into the south-eastern corner of the extant moat. They were constructed in the early 1930's to manage the spring which rises here. The monument is believed to have been a manor of the Knights Hospitallers, and may have been built on the site of an earlier settlement in the area which appears in Domesday Book. The concrete tanks are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them 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
Le Patourel, H E J, Moated site of Yorkshire, (1973), 111
Beresford, M W, 'Yorks. Archaeological Journal' in The Lost Villages of Yorkshire, , Vol. 38, (1952), 59
CUC RW12-RW18, Cambridge University, CUC RW12-RW18,
OS 71/137/170-171,


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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