Moated site at Marlbrook Hall Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1017531

Date first listed: 16-Jan-1998


Ordnance survey map of Moated site at Marlbrook Hall Farm
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Solihull (Metropolitan Authority)

Parish: Meriden

National Grid Reference: SP 26470 84172


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 Marlbrook Hall Farm is a well preserved example of a simple homestead moat typical of many which used to be found in the area, its survival within an associated field system with little evidence of recent disturbance enhances its importance.


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


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of the moated site of Marlbrook Hall. The moated site is a compact sub-rectangular homestead moat complete in circuit except for a breach across the southern angle created by the building of the present farm buildings. The moated site is orientated north west to south east and measures approximately 130m by 50m and covers an area of about 1.24ha. The present 16th to 17th century farm house represents the final phase of the farm outbuildings of the former hall and is timber framed with brick noggin on a sandstone plinth. The farm house is a Grade II Listed Building and is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it is included. The moat is substantially water-filled from the southern angle along the south eastern and north eastern arms. The moat is dry from mid-way along the north eastern arm around the northern angle and for the whole of the north western arm. The remainder of the moat in the south western arm is water-filled, as an isolated pond. The moat ditches are quite uniform measuring 6m to 10m across the top of the banks, except in the southern angle where the moat widens to approximately 15m across. The interior of the moat island is undulating with earthworks representing both former orchard remains and the site of Marlbrook Hall. To the exterior of the south western arm of the moat, is evidence of a substantial exterior bank. The fields to the north, west, and south of the moat all contain medieval ridge and furrow cultivation remains. A 20m sample of this is included in the scheduling in order to preserve the relationship between the moated site and the medieval field system. The moat appears to be spring fed but was augmented by surface drainage fed from a leat in the south western corner. An over flow channel is located in the eastern angle. The farm house, all ancillary buildings, all garden furniture, the surface of modern paths and garden walls, and the modern post and wire fences and wooden gates which surround the moat, are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath all these features is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 30010

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Salzman, LF (ed), The Victoria History of the County of Warwickshire: Volume IV, (1947), 150-1
1947 to present, Various county archaeologists and SMR officer, Notes in SMR file regarding the site,

End of official listing