Moated grange


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010307

Date first listed: 24-Sep-1953

Date of most recent amendment: 11-Jun-1992


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

County: Leicestershire

District: Melton (District Authority)

Parish: Burton and Dalby

National Grid Reference: SK 77343 15462


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

Reasons for Designation

A monastic grange was a farm owned and run by a monastic community and independent of the secular manorial system of communal agriculture and servile labour. The function of granges was to provide food and raw materials for consumption within the parent monastic house itself, and also to provide surpluses for sale for profit. The first monastic granges appeared in the 12th century but they continued to be constructed and used until the Dissolution. This system of agriculture was pioneered by the Cistercian order but was soon imitated by other orders. Some granges were worked by resident lay-brothers (secular workers) of the order but others were staffed by non-resident labourers. The majority of granges practised a mixed economy but some were specialist in their function. Five types of grange are known: agrarian farms, bercaries (sheep farms), vaccaries (cattle ranches), horse studs and industrial complexes. A monastery might have more than one grange and the wealthiest houses had many. Frequently a grange was established on lands immediately adjacent to the monastery, this being known as the home grange. Other granges, however, could be found wherever the monastic site held lands. On occasion these could be located at some considerable distance from the parent monastery. Granges are broadly comparable with contemporary secular farms although the wealth of the parent house was frequently reflected in the size of the grange and the layout and architectural embellishment of the buildings. Additionally, because of their monastic connection, granges tend to be much better documented than their secular counterparts. No region was without monastic granges. The exact number of sites which originally existed is not precisely known but can be estimated, on the basis of numbers of monastic sites, at several thousand. Of these, however, only a small percentage can be accurately located on the ground today. Of this group of identifiable sites, continued intensive use of many has destroyed much of the evidence of archaeological remains. In view of the importance of granges to medieval rural and monastic life, all sites exhibiting good archaeological survival are identified as nationally important.

The moated grange at Burton and Dalby is linked by documentary evidence to Vaudey Abbey in Lincolnshire. The monument survives in good condition and will preserve remains of an unusual associated tower.


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


The Grange is a moated site occupying an isolated location midway between the villages of Burton Lazars and Little Dalby. It comprises a rectangular moat with a further ditch projecting from the north-east corner. Situated on the western bank of Burton Brook, the earthwork ditches are 8-10m wide and 1.5-2m deep. The approximate overall dimensions of the moated area are 75m north-south, and 60m east-west. The ditch at the north-east corner reflects the dimensions of the moat arms and projects 90m northwards, bending slightly towards the river. Running the length of the eastern side of the site, including the northern arm, are the slight remains of an outer bank. The moat island is slightly raised on the north-east side, with a low mound in the opposite corner, and brick foundations of a modern barn in the south-east. Several gifts of land in Burton Lazars, including this grange, were given to Vaudey Abbey in Lincolnshire by Richard I, as documented in 1189. Historical sources also refer to a stone tower situated within this grange. Excluded from the scheduling are the modern barn foundations on the island but the ground beneath them 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: 17028

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Courtney, P, The Medieval Granges of Leicestershire, (1977)
Hartley, R F, The Medieval Earthworks of North-West Leicestershire, (1987)

End of official listing