Moated site and associated enclosure at Church Farm

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013181

Date first listed: 03-Mar-1977

Date of most recent amendment: 03-May-1990

Map

Ordnance survey map of Moated site and associated enclosure at Church Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

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

District: Wokingham (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Barkham

National Grid Reference: SU 78442 66369

Summary

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 Berkshire. This example (the probable site of the medieval manor) survives particularly well and its importance is enhanced by its proximity to the contemporary church of St. James. The site also has potential for further archaeological investigations following observations in 1982.

History

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

Details

The monument includes a moated site and an associated enclosure immediately south-east of St. James's Church. The moat is water-filled and in good condition. It is of irregular shape with external dimensions of approximately 75m NE-SW and 50m NW-SE and with a causeway on the north-west side. The moat varies in width between 5 and 7m while the island has dimensions of 50m NE-SW and 40m NW-SE. Observations in 1982 suggested at least one recut of the moat and deliberate backfilling after the middle ages. Adjacent to the moat on the north-east side is a field with dimensions of 60m NW-SE by 45m NE-SW. It is surrounded on all sides by a ditch and stands 0.5m higher than surrounding land. It is considered to represent the farmyard area of the original manor. Excluded from the scheduling are the modern Church cottage and two outbuildings.

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: 12022

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Fasham, P, Observation of a sewer trench at Church Cottage moated site, (1982)
Other
West Cambridgeshire, Royal Commission on Historical Monuments, An Inventory of Historical Monuments in Cambridgeshire, (1968)

End of official listing