Moated site and fishponds at Bowercourt Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1017807

Date first listed: 23-Feb-1998


Ordnance survey map of Moated site and fishponds at Bowercourt Farm
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This copy shows the entry on 09-Dec-2018 at 19:10:32.


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

County: Worcestershire

District: Wyre Forest (District Authority)

Parish: Rock

National Grid Reference: SO 73646 70835


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 and fishponds at Bowercourt Farm are an important survival of a small moated site. The remains are well preserved and will provide information about the site and about the nature of moated sites in the area. In addition the surviving arms of the moat and fishponds have remained waterlogged and will preserve environmental information relating to the site and landscape in which it was built; whilst the arms (infilled before the 1800s) can be expected to preserve earlier phases of the moat ditch. The existence of another moated site nearby, the parish church and the village within half a mile of Bowercourt moated site, provides an opportunity to consider the relationships between high status settlement sites and villages during the medieval period. In addition the unusual upland location of this moated site will allow an examination of the location of moated sites in relation to their surrounding topography and settlement patterns.


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


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of a small moated site and its associated fishponds at Bowercourt Farm. The moated site is located on a spur of high ground in an upland area, bounded to the west, south and east by steep valleys with streams and to the north by more gently rising ground. To the north east of the moated site lie the remains of a series of fishponds linked by leats.

The moated site measures approximately 80m east to west by 60m north to south. Two arms of the moat, the northern and eastern arms, survive in good condition and are water-filled by surface drainage. The moat arms vary from 8m to 10m wide, being widest across the angles, and are deeply cut, being 2m to 5m deep. The southern and western arms of the moat have been infilled, although buried deposits will survive below the later farm buildings and drive. Remnants of the moat also survive towards the western angle.

A timber framed farm house, of largely 16th and 17th century construction, occupies the northern portion of the moat island and is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it is included. The surface of the island is level with the surrounding ground level.

To the north east of the moat a series of fishponds covering an area of approximately 100m by 20m, and orientated north to south, form an associated water management feature. Two ponds survive as sub-rectangular features arranged along the spring line and separated by substantial earthen banks with stone revetting. A third pond located to the north of the surviving ponds has been infilled and is not included in the scheduling.

The timber framed farm house and its associated buildings, all modern foot bridges, the surfaces of garden paths, patios and driveways and all garden furniture and fences 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: 30016

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Page, W, Willis-Bund, J W (editors), The Victoria History of the County of Worcester: Volume IV, (1924), 320

End of official listing