Moated site at Ewhurst Manor


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1009868

Date first listed: 09-Sep-1992


Ordnance survey map of Moated site at Ewhurst Manor
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: West Sussex

District: Horsham (District Authority)

Parish: Shermanbury

National Grid Reference: TQ 21140 18976


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 moated site at Ewhurst Manor survives well and the undisturbed nature of much of the island will have allowed evidence of the form and organisation of the moated manor to survive. The rarity of oval moats in West Sussex as well as early historical evidence and the survival of early buildings on the island all add to the archaeological potential of the monument.


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


The monument includes an oval moated site with maximum external dimensions of 110m by 93m. It comprises an island 90m by 65m orientated NNE-SSW, surrounded by a moat 5-10m wide. The ditch is presently water-filled and is up to 2.5m deep. On the north side the moat is interrupted by a causeway which, though not original, is likely to be where the original bridge once stood. The moat was fed by water from the fish pond, situated to the north-west of the site, through an inlet in the northern arm which was regulated by a sluice. An outer retaining bank 7m wide is situated to the east of the ditch and stands to a height of 1.3m. Documentary evidence shows that a moated manor house had been constructed on the site by 1267. On the inner lip of the island, at the access point, is an early 14th century gatehouse and porter's lodge (listed Grade I) and at the centre of the island is a 16th century house (listed Grade II), which has re-used an earlier stone chimney. Ewhurst Manor house, the gatehouse and porter's lodge, other outbuildings, garden walls and steps, the footbridge over the ditch to the west and brick foundations of a bridge to the south-east of the island, the gravel surface of the drive, tarmac road surface, and all garden furniture, fixtures and fittings are excluded from the scheduling though the ground beneath all of these 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: 20007

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
'Sussex County Magazine' in , , Vol. 3, (1929)
Wylie, V., (1991)

End of official listing