Moated site at Parsonage Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1017684

Date first listed: 02-Mar-1993


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

County: Essex

District: Uttlesford (District Authority)

Parish: Chrishall

National Grid Reference: TL 44537 38855


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 Parsonage Farm remains largely undisturbed and will retain archaeological information pertaining to the occupation and development of the site. The waterfilled ditches will contain environmental evidence relating to the economy of its inhabitants and the landscape in which they lived.


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


The monument includes a moated site situated 650m north-west of Holy Trinity Church, Chrishall. The monument includes a quadrangular moat measuring 42.5m north-south by 45m east-west. The moat arms are waterfilled and are between 6m and 13m in width. The west, south and east arms are revetted with brick, whereas the northern arm has been revetted in concrete. Outer banks 1m wide and approximately 0.3m high surround the moat on all but the northern side. A brick built bridge gives access to the island on the northern side and a small iron and wooden bridge is built across the southern arm. An outlet pipe at the south-west corner drains excess water from the moat. On the island is the farmhouse which is listed Grade II. A waterpipe which crosses the eastern arm of the moat supplies water to the house. The house, bridges and waterpipe are all excluded from the scheduling though 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: 20684

Legacy System: RSM


Information from National Archaeological Record (TL 43 NW 4),

End of official listing