Moated site at Mount Pleasant


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013075

Date first listed: 25-Jul-1990


Ordnance survey map of Moated site at Mount Pleasant
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Sedgehill and Semley

National Grid Reference: ST 85565 27800


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.

Although a large number of moated sites are known in England, relatively few survive in Wiltshire. This example is particularly important as it survives well with a good range of features. In addition partial excavation has demonstrated good preservation of archaeological deposits.


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


The monument includes a triangular moated site immediately to the west of Mount Pleasant Cottages. The site survives as an earthwork enclosing the top of a slight promontory but overlooked by higher ground to the south and west. It has maximum external dimensions of c.130m north-south and 100m east-west. The longest arm of the triangle faces east. The main feature of the site is a ditch with maximum depth of 3.5m and an average width of between 9 and 11m. There are remains of an inner bank on the north-west and north-east sides and on the south-west is an outer bank with a maximum height of 0.2m and an overall width of 8m. Though mainly dry the ditch has been wet on the south- west side. The causeway approach in the south-west is believed to be original. During the 1960s partial excavation of the western arm revealed medieval pottery and much iron slag. In the centre a horse-shoe shaped mound indicates the location of a building.

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: 12064

Legacy System: RSM


Dennison, E and Darvill, T, HBMC Monument Class Description - Moats, 1988,
Shaftesbury and District Arch Soc, (1960)

End of official listing