Castle Hill motte and bailey, Beaumont Chase

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010925

Date first listed: 13-Feb-1953

Date of most recent amendment: 10-Feb-1992

Map

Ordnance survey map of Castle Hill motte and bailey, Beaumont Chase
© 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: Rutland (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Beaumont Chase

District: Rutland (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Uppingham

National Grid Reference: SK 85000 00487

Summary

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

Reasons for Designation

Motte and bailey 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-bailey 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 and bailey 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 or motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. 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of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle.

Castle Hill at Beaumont Chase provides a particularly well-preserved example of a major defensive medieval earthwork on an important landmark mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon Charter.

History

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

Details

Castle Hill, Beaumont Chase, stands at the end of a steeply sided natural promontory. It consists of a large conical mound with a deep ditch separating it from the bailey to the east.

The mound or motte is 8-10m tall from the base of the ditch and has a flat top approximately 12m across. The motte ditch is semi-circular in shape and is 6-8m wide. There are signs of slight banks at the two ends before the ground slopes away to the west. The outer bank of the bailey survives as a very low earthwork some 50m to the east of the motte.

Beaumont Chase is identified as being a typical example of a post Conquest motte and bailey site. The hill on which the motte and bailey was built is mentioned in an Anglo-Saxon charter of 1046AD and referred to as Martin's Hoe.

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.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number: 17011

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Hart, CR, The Early Charters of Eastern England, (1966), 108-9
Hartley, R F, The Medieval Earthworks of Rutland, (1983), 7

End of official listing