Bruera moated site and adjacent field system
- Heritage Category:
- Scheduled Monument
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
- Date of most recent amendment:
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- Cheshire West and Chester (Unitary Authority)
- National Grid Reference:
- SJ 43630 60543
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 Buerton is a rare example in Cheshire of the survival of a moated site together with an extensive complex of contemporary fields. In addition the site possesses an unusually well documented history with details of ownership and information regarding arrangements of the manor house and associated buildings and land use.
The monument at Buerton includes a well preserved moated site with an
extensive complex of contemporary fields.
The moated site consists of a raised island c.65m x 45-55m, the E half
of which is now occupied by two cottages with gardens. In the W half is
a small sewage plant. A dry, well defined moat, 20m max depth x c.1.4m
deep with an outlet channel at its SW corner, exists on all sides but
has been partly infilled on the E where it runs through the cottage
gardens. Well preserved outer banks lie on all but the E side. An
unusual feature at this monument is the rare survival of a large area
around the moat defined by a scarp 0.6m high that formed the associated
fields or closes. Four fields are recognised that contain water
channels, cultivation beds, ridge and furrow. A document of 1430
indicates that a cow-house and an orchard were then located within these
fields. Most moats were constructed between 1250-1350 and it is to this
period that this example is likely to date. The place name Buerton was
first documented c.1220-30 and the moated site was initially the
manorial residence of a branch of the Pulford family. Documentary
evidence of 1430 gives details of the house which comprised a hall
within the main building, an upper room and an adjoining suite of rooms.
Access was by an entrance bridge. The house declined as a residence in
the late 15th century.
The two cottages and associated outbuildings and sewage plant occupying
the island are excluded from the scheduling, as are all telegraph poles,
all fences, and hedged field boundaries. The ground beneath all 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:
- Legacy System:
Books and journals
Cheshire Sheaf, (1930)
RCHME, , Moat and Settlement Remains at Bruera, (1986)
Ormerod, G, 'History of Cheshire' in History of Cheshire, , Vol. 3, (1882)
Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Description - Moats, (1988)
Title: 1st Edition 1" Source Date: 1842 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:
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