Medieval moated site 150m south east of Low Hutton Post Office


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
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Ordnance survey map of Medieval moated site 150m south east of Low Hutton Post Office
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

North Yorkshire
Ryedale (District Authority)
Huttons Ambo
National Grid Reference:
SE 76318 67386

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 site at Low Hutton is a variation of the usual form of moated site in that it has a narrow surrounding ditch. It is known from excavations within the interior of the site that significant remains of medieval structures survive. Further archaeological remains will also be preserved within the interior and in the partly infilled ditches and will assist in the study of the medieval environment and economy of the site.


The monument includes a medieval moated site visible as a regularly shaped enclosure surrounded by a bank and ditch. It is situated on a bluff overlooking the River Derwent. The site is nearly rectangular in shape with a substantial bank and external ditch on the north, south and west sides with the east side formed by the top of the slope down to the river. The enclosure measures 55m east to west and 60m north to south with the banks standing up to 1.5m above the interior. The ditches to the north and west are up to 1.5m deep. The ditch to the south has been incorporated into a later deep hollow way. The interior of the enclosure is level with some evidence of earthworks in the south west corner. There is an entrance through the bank in the north side of the enclosure. The site was partly excavated in 1956 and the remains of a 13th century medieval timber hall were uncovered. Further earthworks lie to the west of the monument. Their origin and function are not fully understood and they are therefore not included in 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.

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Books and journals
Thompson, M V, 'Archaeological Journal' in Excavation of the Fortified Medieval Hall of Hutton Colwain, , Vol. VOL CXIV, (1957), 69-81
McElvaney M, Howardian Hills AONB Historical Enviroment Study, (1994)


This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

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