Moated site 300m SE of St Chad's Church


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012107

Date first listed: 14-Nov-1969

Date of most recent amendment: 17-May-1991


Ordnance survey map of Moated site 300m SE of St Chad's Church
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Wybunbury

National Grid Reference: SJ 70198 49575


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 is in a good state of preservation unencumbered by modern building. It possesses considerable archaeological potential for the recovery of evidence of structural foundations of the building that originally occupied the island. Additionally the embanked access causeway is a rare and unusual feature associated with this class of monument. Of particular importance, however, is its close proximity to a second moated site which also survives well. Such close proximity is unusual for this class of monument.


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


The monument is situated 300m SE of St Chad's Church on low lying land prone to flooding. It consists of a slightly raised grass-covered island c.40m square that rises towards the S and SE. A dry moat 8-9m wide x 0.5m deep surrounds the island and is best preserved at the SW corner. An outer bank 6.5m max. width encircles the moat and has outlet channels cut through it at the N and NE corners and along the SE side. An unusual feature at this site is a long causeway 6m wide approaching from the NW and flanked by dry ditches and a low outer bank on the NE. To the immediate SW of this causeway, there are faint remains of a former fishpond. Access to the interior of the moated site would have been by a bridge or drawbridge. A second moated site of similar form lies 200m to the NE. Most moats were constructed between 1250-1350 and are generally seen as the prestigious residences of the Lords of the manor. The moat in such circumstances marked the high status of the occupier, but also served to deter casual raiders and wild animals. A telegraph pole and wooden cable support on the SW outer bank and an inspection chamber on the SE outer bank are excluded from the scheduling. The ground beneath these features, however, is included.

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: 13439

Legacy System: RSM


Capstick, B, FMW Report, (1988)
Cheshire SMR No. 183/2,
Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Moats, (1988)

End of official listing