Moated site 150m south east of St Mary's Church
- Heritage Category:
- Scheduled Monument
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
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This copy shows the entry on 19-Oct-2019 at 02:43:52.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- County of Herefordshire (Unitary Authority)
- National Grid Reference:
- SO 42073 25574
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 150m south east of St Mary's Church is a good example of this class of monument. The platform area will retain evidence for the original buildings and for activities that took place there, allowing the use of the site to be understood. Material that has accumulated in the ditch since its construction will preserve environmental evidence for activity at and around the moat, and evidence for structures such as a causeway will be preserved in the infilled eastern arm of the ditch. When viewed as part of a group including Kentchurch Court itself and its associated deer park, the monument assists our understanding of the social organisation of the county and the leisure pursuits of the medieval aristocracy.
The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a medieval moated
site, situated in the Monnow Valley at the foot of a west facing slope. The
site is located at the entrance to Kentchurch Park (Deer Park), approximately
250m south west of Kentchurch Court which was, in origin, a 14th century
The moated island is square in plan and measures 40m NNW-SSE by 42m WSW-ENE.
It is surrounded on all sides by a ditch averaging 12m wide, which survives to
a depth of c.1.5m on the north west side. The ditch has become infilled on the
south and east sides, however it will survive here as a buried feature. A 1949
survey of the site recorded an external bank flanking the western, northern,
and eastern arms of the moat, however this feature has now been removed and is
not included in the scheduling.
Evidence for the original entrance to the moated island, represented by a
causeway across the eastern arm and which appeared on the same survey, will
survive as buried features.
Such simple square moats are often found ornamenting medieval hunting lodges,
and this site may well have been constructed soon after the enclosure
of the deer park.
All fences around the monument are excluded from the scheduling, but the
ground beneath them is included.
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:
- Legacy System:
Books and journals
Royal Commission on Historical Monuments, , Herefordshire, south west, (1931), 153
mss, held on SMR, RCHM, Kentchurch (S of Court), (1949)
R2 MP 13/4/69, (1969)
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