Medieval moated site north-east of Upper Common


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013393

Date first listed: 02-Mar-1953

Date of most recent amendment: 02-Oct-1991


Ordnance survey map of Medieval moated site north-east of Upper Common
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: West Sussex

District: Chichester (District Authority)

Parish: Heyshott

National Park: SOUTH DOWNS

National Grid Reference: SU 90017 18054


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 Heyshott holds considerable archaeological potential since both the moat and the interior have lain apparently undisturbed since their abandonment.


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


The monument includes the surrounding moat and internal area of a medieval moated manor house site. The internal area, on which the manor house itself would have stood along with ancillary buildings such as a kitchen and storehouse, is square in plan and measures some 50m across. Its surface undulates subtly, suggesting the presence of foundations and floors below the soil. The surrounding moat averages 6m in width except on the west side where it has been partly infilled by garden landscaping and hence narrows to 2.5m across. The general ground surface slopes gently to the north-east and the moat has therefore been cut to a deeper level on the south and west sides to enable water to be held in the moat. At its deepest point the present level of the moat is some 2m below the level of the interior, and would have been deeper before it silted up. The fence in the moat on the south side is 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: 12857

Legacy System: RSM


Darvill, T, Monument Class Description - Moats (1988), 1988,

End of official listing