Medieval moated site, Cooden


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012918

Date first listed: 06-Aug-1975

Date of most recent amendment: 23-Jul-1990


Ordnance survey map of Medieval moated site, Cooden
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: East Sussex

District: Rother (District Authority)

National Grid Reference: TQ 70842 07240


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 moated site at Cooden is of importance because it survives well and consequently is of high archaeological potential. The island is considered likely to contain evidence of the organisation and development of the buildings of the manor site, while the waterlogged moat is likely to contain evidence of the climate and economy of the manor in addition to normally perishable artefacts.


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


The moated site at Cooden includes a nearly square moat with arms 50-60m long and 12-14m wide which surrounds an island 30m square. Also included is a low earthen causeway at the centre of the north-eastern arm of the moat which provided access to the moat island. Moated sites are generally seen as the prestigious residences of the Lords of the manor. The moat marked the high status of the occupier, but also served to deter casual raiders and wild animals. Most moats were constructed in the period to either side of 1300 AD, and it is to this period that the example at Cooden is likely to date. Historical records suggest that the moated site was the manor of the de Codyinge family, of local prominence in the 13th and 14th centuries. A house stood on the moat island until the 19th century, but it is not known whether this was an original or later structure. An expansion of the moat at the north-west corner is interpreted as a small fishpond, located on the upstream side as is typical. The fishpond would have provided fresh fish for the table, and would have been separated from the moat proper by sluice gates. A number of hexagonal concrete block tank-traps of Second World War vintage have been strewn in and around the moat. These are excluded from the scheduling.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 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: 12733

Legacy System: RSM


Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Description - Moats, (1988)
TQ 70 NW 2,

End of official listing