Two moats and five fishponds at Top Green


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1009154

Date first listed: 09-May-1951

Date of most recent amendment: 09-Dec-1992


Ordnance survey map of Two moats and five fishponds at Top Green
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Nottinghamshire

District: Rushcliffe (District Authority)

Parish: Sibthorpe

National Grid Reference: SK 76776 45209


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 site at Top Green is a good example of a double moat with attached fishponds. It has suffered only minimal disturbance since it was abandoned and so remains from both the medieval and post-medieval periods will survive well and extensively.


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


The monument includes a group of two moats and five fishponds at Top Green. The two moats are adjacent to each other and lie at the south end of the site. Each consists of a platform or island surrounded by a 12m wide ditch which varies in depth between 1m and 2m, the deepest area being to the north-east where the moats connect with the fishpond complex. The westernmost island is the larger, measuring c.30m on each side, and a low bank extending round the north and west sides indicates that it was revetted with a wall. The eastern island measures c.30m west to east by c.25m north to south and does not appear to have been walled. The two moats share a central dividing ditch and it is probable that the platforms were connected by a bridge somewhere along this division. At its north end, the central ditch is partially enclosed by a short spur which projects from the north-east corner of the western island and indicates the position of a wooden sluice gate which would have controlled the flow of water and fish in the moat. North of it lies the first fishpond, comprising a 2m deep area roughly 20m square where the two moats connect. Projecting from the north-west corner of this pond is a narrow 30m long channel which lies between two linear banks, each c.8m wide and running west to east. The bank south of the channel extends round the north arm of the western moat, ending roughly on a level with the central dividing ditch, while the one north of the channel extends further eastward, forming the north side of the pond. At its east end this bank turns south then east again, forming the east side of the pond and partially enclosing the north arm of the east moat. Turning north again, it encloses a small 5m square fishpond which lies to the east of the first. This small pond is connected via a sluice, projecting from its north-east corner, to the east arm of the eastern moat which here extends past the island to form the third fishpond. This third pond is rectangular, 2m deep and measures c.50m from north to south by c.12m east to west. At either end, further rectangular fishponds join it at right-angles, each one measuring c.25m by c.10m. The remains of domestic and ancillary buildings will survive in the area adjacent to the fishponds and on the two islands. Excluded from the scheduling are the shelter and haystore on the eastern island and all boundary fencing and hedges, although the ground underneath 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: 13391

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Nottinghamshire: Volume I, (1906), 310
Allcroft, Hadrian, (1908)

End of official listing