Westhope moat and fishpond

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010373

Date first listed: 06-Jan-1976

Date of most recent amendment: 13-Jul-1992

Map

Ordnance survey map of Westhope moat and fishpond
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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Location

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Shropshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Diddlebury

National Grid Reference: SO 46656 85919

Summary

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.

Westhope moat and associated fishpond is a well preserved example of a medieval homestead moat with a water management system. The monument is essentially undisturbed and will retain considerable potential for the preservation of archaeological and environmental evidence.

History

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

Details

Westhope moat and fishpond lie to the south-west of Westhope village, 400m south-south-west of Westhope Hall. The moat island is surrounded by a wide flat bottomed ditch, 2m deep and 10m to 12m wide, which is mainly waterlogged. There is an outer bank on the east arm of the moat ditch, with slight traces of a second curving outer bank on the north-east corner. The main outer bank on the eastern arm is 1m high and 3m wide. It extends southwards beyond the moat and across the stream to form a dam which retains water for the moat and fishpond. The south ditch of the moat is bordered by the stream. The moat island is 40m square and has undulations suggesting the presence of buried foundations. On the north-east corner of the island a causeway 2.5m wide crosses the ditch. On the south-west corner of the moat lie the remains of a rectangular fishpond measuring 20m north-south and 10m east-west. The pond site is waterlogged and connected to the stream by a shallow channel on its north-west corner. The moat and fishpond lie at a distance from the village of Westhope and may have been constructed during the 13th and 14th centuries when woodland was systematically cleared for agricultural purposes. In the last century the moat was water-filled. According to local tradition the moat island is considered to be the site of `The Castle', a building which was at one time fortified for military use.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 13686

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Dyer, , History of Westhope

End of official listing