Paull Holme moated site and tower


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:
TA 18502 24825

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.

Despite limited in-filling and re-use of the moat, this site survives reasonably well and will retain significant archaeological remains of buildings which originally occupied the island. The later brick tower is also an important survival and other buried remains of the brick house, of which it was an element, will exist on the island.


The monument is the site of the medieval moated manor of Paull Holme. It includes a dry rectangular moat surrounding a raised island measuring 190 metres north to south and 100 metres east to west. Three arms of the moat are visible, the northern, eastern and southern. The southern arm has, however been re-dug and incorporated within later field drains which are still in use. The western arm of the moat has been completely infilled. The island appears, from 19th century maps, to have been sub-divided by a ditch which ran from east to west across the site; this feature has also been infilled. To the north of this feature, earthworks visible on the island are the remains of a medieval manor house which formerly occupied the site. A brick tower also occupies this side of the moated site. It is late 15th century in date, and has a tunnel-vaulted basement with two upper storeys above. The tower is in a ruinous condition and is roofless. The tower is a Grade I listed building. The manor was the home of the Holme family. The brick tower was an element of a brick house built during the 15th century. This house continued in use until the 19th century, when it was robbed to provide building materials for new buildings away from the moated site. In 1871 the tower was converted into a gazebo by Colonel Bryn Holme. Since 1900 the tower has fallen into ruin.

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:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Boyle, J R, The Early History of the Town and Port of Hedon, (1875), 94
Le Patourel, H E J, Moated site of Yorkshire, (1973), 115
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: Yorkshire - York and the East Riding, (1972), 325
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: Yorkshire - York and the East Riding, (1972), 325
Poulson, G, History and Antiquities of Holderness, (1841), 493
Sheahan, , Whellan, , History and Topography of York And The East Riding, (1856), 343
Brooks, F W, 'Journal of the British Archaeological Association' in Journal of the British Archaeological Association, (1939)
Ryder, P F, Coleman, S, 'The East Riding Archaeologist' in Paull Holme Tower, (1983), 85-87
Ryder, P F, 'The East Riding Archaeologist' in The East Riding Archaeologist, (1983), 85


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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