Little Moreton Hall moated site and outlying prospect mound
- Heritage Category:
- Scheduled Monument
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
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This copy shows the entry on 22-Nov-2019 at 07:23:39.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)
- Odd Rode
- National Grid Reference:
- SJ 83181 58874, SJ 83233 58925
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.
Little Moreton Hall moated site is commonly regarded as containing the most famous and picturesque timber-framed manor house in England. The form of the original medieval site is clearly evident and extensive remains of the original buildings on the island will survive beneath the present house and gardens. Additionally organic remains will survive in the waterlogged moat. The Elizabethan use of the site demonstrates the continued importance of the monument at this later period.
The monument is the moated site of Little Moreton Hall, one of the finest
examples of a medieval moated manor house in England. The site includes an
island c.70m x 50m containing the timber-framed Little Moreton Hall, lawns,
ornamental shrubs, gravel paths, a prospect mound, and the knot garden - a
20th century restoration of an Elizabethan garden. Surrounding the island
is a waterlogged moat c.10m wide flanked on its W side by a low outer bank
c.2m wide x 0.2m high. Access to the island is by a low sandstone bridge
across the moat's S arm that leads to the S gatehouse. At this point the moat
sides are revetted. A second prospect mound lies outside the moat close to
the SW corner.
Little Moreton Hall was first mentioned in 1271. The present structure
evolved from the early 15th century to c.1600 and is currently owned by the
National Trust and open to the public.
Little Moreton Hall and the bridge allowing access across the moat are
Grade 1 Listed. Little Moreton Hall, its courtyard and bridge, all service
pipes, fences and gravel paths are excluded from the scheduling although the
ground beneath all these features is included. The monument is divided into
two separate constraint areas.
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:
- Legacy System:
Books and journals
Dodgson, J McN, The Place Names of Cheshire Part 1, (1970)
Williams, S R, 'CAB' in CAB, , Vol. 6, (1978)
Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Description - Moats, (1988)
DOE, List of Buildings of Historic & Architectural Interest,
SMR No. 130/1/1, Cheshire SMR, Little Moreton Hall, (1989)
SMR No. 130/1/2, Cheshire SMR, Barn at Little Moreton Hall Farm, (1987)
SMR No. 130/1/4, Cheshire SMR, Garden at Little Moreton Hall, (1989)
Title: Ordnance Survey 1:2500 Source Date: Author: Publisher: Surveyor:
To Turner R C, (1984)
Wilson, D., To Cheshire SMR, (1986)
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