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Castle Hill motte, Dolphinholme

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Castle Hill motte, Dolphinholme

List entry Number: 1010794

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Lancashire

District: Lancaster

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Ellel

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 17-May-1991

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 13463

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

Reasons for Designation

Motte castles are medieval fortifications introduced into Britain by the Normans. They comprised a large conical mound of earth or rubble, the motte, surmounted by a palisade and a stone or timber tower. In a majority of examples an embanked enclosure containing additional buildings, the bailey, adjoined the motte. Motte castles and motte-and-bai1ey castles acted as garrison forts during offensive military operations, as strongholds, and, in many cases, as aristocratic residences and as centres of local or royal administration. Built in towns, villages and open countryside, motte castles generally occupied strategic positions dominating their immediate locality and, as a result, are the most visually impressive monuments of the early post-Conquest period surviving in the modern landscape. Over 600 motte castles and motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. Some 100-150 examples do not have baileys and are classified as motte castles. As one of a restricted range of recognised early post-Conquest monuments, they are particularly important for the study of Norman Britain and the development of the feudal system. Although many were occupied for only a short period of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle.

The medieval motte at Dolphinholme is of particular historical and archaeological importance as the only known example of this class of monument in the Wyre Valley. In such a setting the site was of strategic importance allowing control of movement along the river valley.

History

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

Details

The monument at Dolphinholme comprises a medieval motte formed by an artificial mound strategically situated on a small plateau on the valley side some 20m above the floodplain of the River Wyre. The monument consists of a grassy mound c.1.5m high x 20m max. diameter at the base, that has been partly eroded by quarrying on the W side. On the flat summit are gritstone foundations comprising two walls of a structure standing one course high above the surface. On the N side of the motte are traces of a short causeway giving access from the higher ground of the sloping hillside. Faint traces of a surrounding ditch c.1m wide are visible E of the causeway.

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

Selected Sources

Other
Leach, P.E., MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Motte & Bailey Castles, (1988)
To Lancaster Univ. Archaeology Unit, Higham, M, (1987)

National Grid Reference: SD 52048 53620

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1010794 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 20-Nov-2017 at 09:38:57.

End of official listing