Thorntree House moated site


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1009075

Date first listed: 13-Jun-1968

Date of most recent amendment: 14-Jan-1993


Ordnance survey map of Thorntree House moated site
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Staffordshire

District: East Staffordshire (District Authority)

Parish: Uttoxeter Rural

National Grid Reference: SK 08582 30262


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 monument is a rare and unusual example in Staffordshire of a double-island moated site. Despite some infilling of the moat and slight mutilation of the north-eastern island the monument remains in good condition. It is unexcavated and remains unencumbered by modern development. Evidence of the original buildings occupying the islands will survive and organic material will be preserved within the waterlogged moat.


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


The monument is Thorntree House moated site, a double-island moated site situated 60m north-west of the modern Thorntree House. The main island measures c.76m by 59m and contains a low raised central platform some 17m square by 0.1m high. In the south-west of the island, and parallel to the moat, lie two rectangular fishponds. The northerly one measures 16m by 8m and is 0.4m deep; the southerly one measures 20m by 9m and is 0.4m deep. Both ponds are connected to the moat's south-western arm by short outlet channels. In the north-west of the island is a boggy irregularly shaped hollow 35m by 11m by 0.2m deep that is connected to the moat's north-western arm by a short channel. To the north-east of the main island is a secondary island measuring c.39m by 35m. A causeway connects the two islands. Surrounding both islands is a largely waterlogged moat 10-14m wide by 2m deep that is flanked by an outer bank 9m wide and 0.1m high that runs from the mid-point of the south-western arm to the southern corner. The moat's north-eastern arm and the northern ends of the north-western and south-eastern arms have been infilled, as has the northern end of the moated arm separating the two islands. All field boundaries and telegraph poles 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: 13510

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Staffs County Council, , Thorn Tree Farm Scounslow Green: Biological Survey, (1990), 1-7
Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Moats, (1988)
Map associated with SMR No 174, Staffs SMR, Thorntree House: Uttoxeter Rural,

End of official listing