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West End House moated site, 640m west of St Lawrence's Church

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: West End House moated site, 640m west of St Lawrence's Church

List entry Number: 1012097

Location

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

County: Essex

District: Braintree

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Ridgewell

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 23-Feb-1998

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: 20767

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

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.

West End House moated site is an unusual shape, remains well preserved and will retain archaeological information relating to the construction and occupation of the site. The water-filled ditches will retain environmental evidence relating to the economy of its inhabitants and the landscape in which they lived.

The site is close to a second moated site at Moat Farm 250m to the south (the subject of a separate scheduling) and associations such as this allow a study of the relationships between different types of moated site and illustrate the ways they functioned in the wider context of the village and the parish.

History

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

Details

The monument at West End House includes a medieval moated site situated on relatively high ground to the north of the River Colne, immediately north of the Stambourne Road (Drury Lane) and some 350m to the west of centre of the village of Ridgewell.

The moated site is triangular in shape, defined by two arms of a water-filled ditch which converge at a point some 105m to the north of Stambourne Road. These ditches, fed by drainage, measure between 7.5m and 4m in width and average approximately 2m in depth. The southern end of the eastern arm now terminates some 50m from Drury Lane, although it is known to survive as a buried feature reaching almost to the northern side of West End House (approximately 25m from the road). The western arm similarly terminates some 30m short of the road, where it is joined by two channels - a narrow leat (not included in the scheduling) extending westwards towards The Mill House and a wider spur curving to the south east. The south eastern spur is shown as a narrow drain continuing towards the road on maps dating back to 1873, although this section has been considerably modified in recent times and is therefore not included in the scheduling.

The interior of the monument is level and is thought to retain buried evidence for the structures which the moat was originally designed to enclose. The southern edge of the area flanked by the moat arms (along the road frontage) is, however, not included in the scheduling. This area was formerly occupied by an 18th and 19th century farm, of which only one building, West End House, remains. Modern houses now occupy the site of the wider farm complex.

All outbuildings, fences and the surfaces of all paths are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath these features is included.

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

Selected Sources

Other
Title: Map of Essex Source Date: 1777 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

National Grid Reference: TL 73359 40833

Map

Map
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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 - 1012097 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 14-Dec-2017 at 10:58:14.

End of official listing