Newbury Farm moated enclosures and their associated fishponds and leats, Silsoe


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012701

Date first listed: 10-Dec-1990


Ordnance survey map of Newbury Farm moated enclosures and their associated fishponds and leats, Silsoe
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This copy shows the entry on 19-Jan-2019 at 16:32:39.


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

District: Central Bedfordshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Silsoe

National Grid Reference: TL0762636168


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 Newbury Farm enclosures are an above average example of a Bedfordshire double moated site. The monument provides a good example of typical water-management strategies associated with rural sites of this size.


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


The monument includes the remains of two Medieval moated enclosures and their associated leats and fishponds. The first enclosure is square in shape with arms measuring some 60m in length. The 12m wide moat has been backfilled on south-west and part of the north-west sides to allow for the construction of buildings. The island contains the upstanding Post Medieval remains of Newbury Farm house and two ornamental out-houses on the north-east edge of the island which are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground below the buildings is included. The other buildings (barns and greenhouses) and the ground surfaces are similarly excluded. Associated with the moat are three fishponds connected by a series of inflow and outflow leats. One of the leats also connects to a second moated enclosure to the north-east of Newbury Farm. This moated enclosure is rectangular in form measuring some 55m by 40m inclusive of its 6m wide surrounding moat. The original entrance causeway facing Newbury Farm remains largely intact although there is now a modern bridge (excluded from scheduling). The interior is flat with no visible remains of earlier buildings and features.

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: 11548

Legacy System: RSM


Anon, CRO Ref 2 (Re Newbury Farm),
CRO 217/2, Newbury Farm, Silsoe,
J.R.L., (Re Newbury Farm), (1973)
L26/457 (Re Newbury Farm), (1845)
L33/9 (Re Newbury Farm), (1826)
Porter, H, X1/89 (Re Newbury Farm), (1757)

End of official listing