Motte castle and ice house 30m south of The Old Farm

Overview

Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
1012867
Date first listed:
02-Jan-1976
Date of most recent amendment:
26-Jul-1995

Map

Ordnance survey map of Motte castle and ice house 30m south of The Old Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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Location

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

District:
Shropshire (Unitary Authority)
Parish:
Bucknell
National Grid Reference:
SO 35578 73954

Reasons for Designation

Motte castles are medieval fortifications introduced into Britain by the Normans. They comprised a large conical mound of earth or rubble, the motte, surmounted by a palisade and a stone or timber tower. In a majority of examples an embanked enclosure containing additional buildings, the bailey, adjoined the motte. Motte castles and motte-and-bai1ey castles acted as garrison forts during offensive military operations, as strongholds, and, in many cases, as aristocratic residences and as centres of local or royal administration. Built in towns, villages and open countryside, motte castles generally occupied strategic positions dominating their immediate locality and, as a result, are the most visually impressive monuments of the early post-Conquest period surviving in the modern landscape. Over 600 motte castles and motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. Some 100-150 examples do not have baileys and are classified as motte castles. As one of a restricted range of recognised early post-Conquest monuments, they are particularly important for the study of Norman Britain and the development of the feudal system. Although many were occupied for only a short period of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle.

The motte castle at Old Farm, Bucknell survives well and is a good example of its class. It will retain archaeological information relating both to its construction and to the occupation of the site. Environmental evidence relating to the landscape in which the monument was constructed will be preserved sealed on the old land surface beneath the motte and in the ditch fill. Such motte castles provide valuable information concerning the settlement pattern and social organisation of the countryside during the medieval period and in this respect the proximity of the parish church which lies to the south west of the motte is of interest.

Details

The monument includes the remains of a small motte castle situated on the north bank of the River Redlake, in close proximity to Bucknell parish church and a river crossing point. It includes an earthen mound, or motte, oval in plan measuring 22m east to west by 20m north to south and standing up to 4.3m high. The summit of the motte is eroded and slumped giving a rounded profile and measures 8m east to west by 6m north to south. The southern side of the mound has been cut into to allow the construction of a farm building, now removed. A stone lined ice house 1.3m high and 6m deep has been built into the NNW side of the mound. The ice house, which is a Listed Building Grade II, is included in the scheduling. A fragment of the surrounding ditch is visible as an earthwork for a short length on the north east side of the mound, here it is 3m wide and 0.3m deep. The ditch will continue around the remaining sides of the motte as a buried feature of similar width, except in the north west quarter where the foundation cut of the adjacent farm house will have destroyed the ditch.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
19201
Legacy System:
RSM

Legal

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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