Moated enclosures east and west of Love Lane, Ashwell


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012208

Date first listed: 17-Oct-1990


Ordnance survey map of Moated enclosures east and west of Love Lane, Ashwell
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This copy shows the entry on 17-Jan-2019 at 22:13:08.


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

County: Hertfordshire

District: North Hertfordshire (District Authority)

Parish: Ashwell

National Grid Reference: TL 25169 40195, TL 25256 40264


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

Reasons for Designation

Around 6000 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 or, in some cases, which were used for horticulture. 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 understanding the distribution of wealth and status in the countryside. Many examples provide conditions favourable to the survival of organic remains. The survival of two differing types of Medieval moated enclosure in such close proximity is rare and unusual in Hertfordshire. The enclosures survive well and have potential for the recovery of further archaeological remains.


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


The monument includes a double island moated site and an adjacent single island enclosure. The double island site is located to the east of Love Lane. It comprises two rectangular shaped enclosures with external dimensions of c85m east-west by 50m north-south inclusive of the surrounding moats. The northern of the two enclosures is surrounded by a 10m wide moat, whereas the southern enclosure is defined by a 5m wide moat. The undulating interior of the two moated islands marks the sites of Medieval buildings and limited excavations earlier this century uncovered the foundations of masonry walls within the enclosures. A number of Medieval artifacts have been recovered from the site. The western outer edge of the site has been truncated by a small stream and the modern lane. Some sections of the northern moat have been backfilled with farm debris. Adjacent to the west of the double island site is a second moated enclosure. The enclosure is square in shape measuring c 70m in external dimensions, inclusive of the 4m wide surrounding moat. A 4m wide outer scarp flanks its west arm. The east arm of the moat is thought to be overlain by the adjacent lane. The interior of the moated island is partially occupied by Ashwell End Farm, dating to the Post-Medieval period. The house and a small outbuilding are excluded from the scheduling, but the ground beneath the buildings is included. The uneven western part of the island may mark the location of earlier buildings associated with the moated site. The monument has two protected areas.

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: 11558

Legacy System: RSM


Survey, Burley, G, (1986)
Title: Source Date: 1972 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: OS Survey at Love Lane, Ashwell
Woodford, 1911, Unpub excav report

End of official listing