Oxhey Hall moated site
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1010727
Date first listed: 02-Jan-1992
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Three Rivers (District Authority)
Parish: Watford Rural
National Grid Reference: TQ 10333 94403
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.
Oxhey Hall moated site has royal connections and is well-documented historically. The monument survives in good condition and the interior of the moat, which is essentially undisturbed, retains high archaeological potential.
The moat at Oxhey Hall lies east of Oxhey. It is a rectangular shaped moat
measuring c.102m north-south by c.60m east-west. The arms are between 12m and
13m in width and are c.2m in depth. They are now dry but were originally fed
by a brook to the north which has been re-routed. The eastern arm has been
infilled though it is visible as a slight depression in front of the house.
There is evidence of an external bank running around the three surviving sides
of the moat. It measures approximately 2m in width and 0.5m in height. On
the island is Oxhey Hall, a Grade II listed building, which dates from the
16th century with later alterations and restorations. It is known to have
been the hunting lodge of Henry VIII. The Hall is excluded from the
scheduling but the ground beneath it is included.
MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: 20613
Legacy System: RSM
Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of : Volume III, (1912)
SMR No: 070250, Information from SMR,
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