Medieval moated site, north of Oakdale Farm
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1012782
Date first listed: 02-May-1990
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Mole Valley (District Authority)
National Grid Reference: TQ 15702 37816
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 example north of Oakdale Farm survives in good condition, undisturbed by later buildings, and the ditches remain waterfilled. The unusual form and location of the moated site illustrates the wide diversity of form in this class of monument.
MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map and includes a 3-10 metre boundary around the archaeological features considered essential for the monument's preservation and support.
The moated site north of Oakdale Farm includes an inner and outer moat which
define a small square moat island and an L-shaped precinct area. Moated
sites are generally seen as the prestigious residences of the Lords of the
manor, the moat marking the high status of the occupier but also serving to
deter casual raiders and wild animals. Most moated sites were built in the
period to either side of 1300 AD, and it is to this period that the example at
Oakdale Farm is likely to date.
The monument occupies an unusual hillside location rather than, as is more
common, a valley-bottom. The small, nearly-sqaure moat island is the probable
site of the main residence of which nothing remains above the ground, while
the L-shaped raised area may have provided space for ancillary buildings such
as stables or granaries. There is no visible evidence of the original access
onto the moated area, but the track from the south-west may formerly have led
onto the islands via a bridge. There is no evidence of an inlet stream, and
the moats were probably filled by spring-water.
MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 10 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: 12758
Legacy System: RSM
Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Description - Moats, (1988)
Surrey Antiquity 715,
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