Hodge Lane Manor, a moated site with fishponds and associated closes


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1011067

Date first listed: 23-Sep-1993


Ordnance survey map of Hodge Lane Manor, a moated site with fishponds and associated closes
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This copy shows the entry on 17-Dec-2018 at 09:37:45.


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

County: Staffordshire

District: East Staffordshire (District Authority)

Parish: Marchington

National Grid Reference: SK 10821 29444


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.

The monument at Hodge Lane is a well-preserved example of a complete manorial site with a moated manor house platform, associated fishponds and closes, all confined within a near-complete boundary ditch. The site is unexcavated and unencumbered by modern development. Evidence of the building that originally occupied the platform will exist as buried features and evidence will be preserved within the naturally silted ditches for the economy and environment of its inhabitants.


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


The monument is situated 130m south-west of St John's Church, Smithy Hill and includes a large building platform which was probably originally moated, a fishpond complex with its associated water management system and two small closes. The extent of the manor site is defined by boundary earthworks on its western, northern and southern edges, and by Hodge Lane on its eastern edge. These features enclose a rectangular area of approximately 2.5 hectares. The earthwork remains of the building platform are situated within the northern part of the monument and the platform has been cut into a south-facing slope. The platform is raised approximately 0.5m above the surrounding ground surface and measures approximately 60m north-south and 80m west-east. There is an extension to the platform at its north-eastern corner which projects approximately 24m eastwards. The platform is considered to be the site of a large manor house. There is a waterfilled ditch along the northern and north-western edges of the platform. These features also form the northern boundary to the manorial complex as a whole. An infilled ditch is visible at the eastern edge of the platform and, whilst there is no surface evidence for a ditch along its southern boundary, it is thought that the ditch originally extended along this side as well and so the platform would have been completely surrounded by a moat. The line of the ditch has been slightly altered on its north-western side where a pond has formed. There is a shallow depression visible to the west of the platform which is the outflow channel for the moat. The channel runs north-south in the modern pasture and marks the western boundary to the manorial complex. The southern boundary ditch is a similar earthwork feature and it has a west-east alignment. The fishpond complex at the site of Hodge Lane manor house is situated approximately 50m to the south of the building platform. The group of ponds and their associated drainage channels are now dry. The complex includes one main pond and three smaller, subsidiary ponds. The larger pond measures approximately 30m north-south by 20m west-east. A number of sluices would have originally controlled the water supply within each individual pond. An outflow channel, visible as a shallow depression, can be traced at the southern edge of the fishpond complex. Within the eastern part of the manorial complex are the earthwork remains of two small closes. The closes are defined by slight banks, the northern measures approximately 30m square whilst the southern is approximately 90m north-south and 30m east-west. The field in which the monument is located was called Moat Meadow on the 1810 Enclosure Map. All fence posts and the hedge on the eastern edge of the monument are excluded from the scheduling, but the ground beneath these features 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: 21534

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Woolley, P, Ellwood, J, The History of Marchington, (1989), 59
Title: Marchington Woodlands Tithe Map Source Date: 1851 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

End of official listing