Pinslade moated grange, Mowsley
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1010484
Date first listed: 10-Mar-1992
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Harborough (District Authority)
Parish: Husbands Bosworth
District: Harborough (District Authority)
National Grid Reference: SP 63486 87133
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.
Pinslade Grange survives in good condition and has considerable potential for the survival of archaeological evidence within its interior. The site has important and well documented associations with Leicester Abbey.
Pinslade Grange is located alongside the main Leicester road, 2.5km north of
Husbands Bosworth, and comprises a moated site within a triangular enclosure,
with a fishpond on the south-eastern side.
The maximum dimensions of the triangular enclosure are 235m north-south and
200m east-west. The east and west arms of the enclosure measure 250m coming
to a point at the north. The enclosure is defined by a ditch, the western arm
of which survives to a depth of 0.5m, and the southern arm is defined by a
west-east flowing stream. The eastern arm consists of a ditch 8-10m wide and
1.5m deep. At the southern end of the eastern ditch is a rectangular dry
fishpond between 1-1.5m deep measuring 25 x 40m which was fed by the stream.
The moated site within the enclosure measures 60 x 60m, the ditch enclosing a
square island. At the north-west corner of the moat the ditch is 14m wide and
2m deep, although the eastern arm is only 10m wide and 1m deep with traces of
an outer bank. The southern arm is almost completely silted up.
Pinslade Grange was given to Leicester Abbey in the 12th century but ceased
to be part of the Abbey's demesne in 1254. Evidence of ridge and furrow
ploughing within the enclosure suggests that it was abandoned at this date and
the western arm was modified due to this activity.
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: 17055
Legacy System: RSM
Leicestershire SMR, (1987)
This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing