Motte and bailey castle 80m south east of Hockleton Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013490

Date first listed: 25-Sep-1969

Date of most recent amendment: 22-Nov-1995


Ordnance survey map of Motte and bailey castle 80m south east of Hockleton Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Shropshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Chirbury with Brompton

National Grid Reference: SO 27448 99949


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

Reasons for Designation

Motte and bailey 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-bailey 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 and bailey 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 or motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. 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of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle.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 and bailey castle south east of Hockleton Farm survives well and is a good example of its class. It will retain valuable archaeological information relating to its construction, date and the character of its occupation. Environmental evidence relating to the landscape in which it was constructed will be preserved sealed on the old land surface beneath the motte and in the fill of the buried ditches. Such motte and bailey castles when considered either as single sites or as a part of the wider medieval landscape contribute valuable information concerning the settlement pattern, economy and social organisation of the countryside during the medieval period. The proximity of the bridge to the north of the castle, at a possible early fording place, is of additional interest as the castle was probably built to control the river crossing.


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


The monument includes the remains of a motte and bailey castle situated on the north end of a ridge on the west bank of a steep sided gorge through which the River Camlad flows, north of Chirbury. The castle was sited to control a river crossing some 200m north of the castle. It includes a well defined castle mound, or motte, circular in plan with a base diameter of 25m rising 4m to a flat summit 6m in diameter. Attached to the north side of the motte are the remains of a roughly triangular bailey enclosure, within which the domestic buildings associated with the castle would have been protected. It has maximum internal dimensions of 40m east to west by 30m north to south and is bounded around its west, north and east sides by a scarp averaging 2m high which curves inwards in the south, towards the motte, which here forms the south side of the enclosure. The bailey scarp is interrupted at its northern corner by an original entrance gap 6m wide. Although no longer visible as a surface feature an outer ditch with an estimated width of 4m will surround the exterior of the motte and bailey.

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: 19227

Legacy System: RSM

End of official listing