Thundridgebury moated enclosure and associated remains of Thundridgebury House, St Mary and All Saints' Church and graveyard, Thundridge


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


Ordnance survey map of Thundridgebury moated enclosure and associated remains of Thundridgebury House, St Mary and All Saints' Church and graveyard, Thundridge
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

East Hertfordshire (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:

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 moated enclosure is unusual for its extensive size, covering up to 2.8ha, and for the range of features it surrounds, involving the manorial complex which includes the remains of Thundridegebury House and St. Mary and All Saints' Church and graveyard.


The monument includes a Medieval moated enclosure and associated remains of Thundridgebury House and St. Mary and All Saints' Church and graveyard. The moated enclosure is "D" shaped with external dimensions of approximately 195m north-south by 200m east-west. The surrounding dry moat varies in width between 7m and 20m, but part of the southern arm and the south-east corner is obscured. Three causewayed breaks in the northern arm of the moat are thought to be modern. The interior of the enclosure contains the ruined remains of Thundridgebury House, believed to date from the 16th century. A series of brick foundations indicate the location of the house and outbuildings which were demolished in 1811. Immediately to the south of the house are the remains of St. Mary and All Saints' Church. The upstanding remains of the 15th century church tower, a grade II* listed building, are excluded from the scheduling, but the ground beneath is included, as are the remains of the adjacent church. The church itself measures some 25m by 12m and is marked out by a series of 0.20m high foundations and wall lines. The church was demolished in 1853. It is surrounded by a disused graveyard defined by an iron fence to the west and brick wall on the other three sides. The graveyard, (now "closed") measures some 60m north-south by 40m east-west and contains numerous gravepits, many marked with stone headstones. Some of the graves are thought likely to date to the Medieval period, with further Medieval deposits preserved in the intervening areas. To the west of the church an irregular series of low earthworks are thought to be the remains of cultivation plots located within the moated enclosure.

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:
Legacy System:


A.S.P., Ordnance Survey Records, (1971)
Smith, F, (1951)
SMR Records, (1987)


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

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