Swan Hill motte

Overview

Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
1007849
Date first listed:
20-Mar-1967
Date of most recent amendment:
04-Oct-1993

Map

Ordnance survey map of Swan Hill motte
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

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Location

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

District:
East Riding of Yorkshire (Unitary Authority)
Parish:
Bilton
National Grid Reference:
TA 15670 32567

Reasons for Designation

Motte 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-bai1ey 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 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 and motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. Some 100-150 examples do not have baileys and are classified as motte castles. 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of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle.

The Swan Hill motte survives well. Evidence of the structures which originally stood on the motte will be preserved.

Details

The monument is the Swan Hill motte. It includes a raised earthen motte enclosed by a single dry moat. The motte is 1.5m high, and 20m in diameter at its base. It has a flattened summit 13m in diameter. The summit of the mound is uneven and shows some signs of disturbance. The moat which encloses the motte is 15m wide and 2m deep, with a flat bottom 3m wide. Limited excavations were undertaken in the 1940's on the summit of the motte by the owner.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 5 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number:
21207
Legacy System:
RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Le Patourel, H E J, Moated site of Yorkshire, (1973), 110
Loughlin, N, Miller, K, Survey of Archaeological Sites in Humberside, (1979), 50
Other
CUC RC8 GH63,

Legal

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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