Moat and associated closes at Marshall's Bridge


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1017659

Date first listed: 03-Jul-1997


Ordnance survey map of Moat and associated closes at Marshall's Bridge
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This copy shows the entry on 18-Dec-2018 at 11:10:14.


The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Kent

District: Shepway (District Authority)

Parish: Burmarsh

County: Kent

District: Shepway (District Authority)

Parish: Dymchurch

National Grid Reference: TR 09111 29850


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 moat and associated closes at Marshall's Bridge survive well in the form of earthworks and buried remains and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to the construction and use of the monument. The monument forms part of a small group of well preserved moats on Romney Marsh, an area in which moats cluster, but where many have been substantially damaged or destroyed by modern agricultural operations.


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


The monument includes a medieval moat and an area of associated small fields, or closes, situated on low-lying, artificially drained land which forms part of Romney Marsh, c.1.2km north west of the channel coast at Dymchurch. The moat lies within the northern part of the monument and has a roughly square, north-south aligned island measuring c.50m by c.55m. Fragments of roof tiles, masonry rubble and sherds of pottery dating to the 14th century found on the eastern side of the island indicate the presence of a medieval building, now surviving in the form of buried foundations. A roughly circular hollow on the western side of the island may represent a contemporary pond. The island is surrounded by a now mainly dry ditch up to c.12m wide and c.1m deep. The northern arm of the ditch forms part of a major drainage channel known as Marshland Sewer. This has been the subject of regular modern dredging which will have destroyed all medieval remains, and is therefore not included in the scheduling. The profile of the northern edge of the moated island has been partly obscured by an artificial bank formed by regular dumping of the dredged material. The associated closes lie to the west and south of the moat and take the form of a least three irregular fields enclosed by shallow, now dry ditches. Historical sources suggest that the moat was strategically placed to allow control of the drainage and water supply system of the area, and lay on the intersection of three former parishes. Marshland's Bridge, the modern gateposts, fence and wooden tracking situated on the northern edge of the monument are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath 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: 29254

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Reeves, A, Marshall's Bridge, Dymchurch, (1995)
Reeves, A, Marshall's Bridge, Dymchurch, (1995)

End of official listing