Moated site and fishpond at Hunt End, 120m south east of Chapel House Farm


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


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

Redditch (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SP 03009 63495

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 fishpond 120m south east of Chapel House Farm is an important survival of a large complex 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 that have remained waterlogged will preserve environmental information relating to the site and landscape in which it was built; whilst the arm partly infilled before the 1800s can be expected to preserve earlier phases of the moat ditch. The existence of the associated fishpond, several building platforms and cultivation remains at the monument provides an opportunity to consider the relationships between high status settlement sites and the surrounding topography. At Hunt End there is a substantial survival of the surrounding earlier landscape including cultivation remains and boundaries. The survival of two other moated sites each within 1.5km of Hunt End will provide the opportunity to consider the relationships between high status settlement in the region during the medieval period, and particularly to examine the arrangement of manorial complexes within the Royal Forest of Feckenham.


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of a sub-rectangular moated site and fishpond 120m south east of Chapel House Farm, Hunt End. It is located just below the base of a slope at the head of a broad, low lying valley which contains a series of streams and ponds, and within the jurisdiction of the medieval Royal Forest of Feckenham. The moated site measures approximately 130m east to west by 200m north to south. The northern, eastern, and southern arms of the moat survive in good condition, two of which are water-filled. The arms vary from 5m to 10m wide and are 0.5m to 2.5m deep. The western arm survives as a partly infilled dry linear earthwork 180m long, 2m to 4m wide and 0.5m to 1m deep. The remains of an inner bank, 2m wide and 0.75m high, survive around parts of the north, south and east sides of the moat. The northern arm of the moat has been partly reinstated. An external earthen bank, up to 1.5m high and 2m to 4m wide survives on the west, south and east sides of the moat. The surface of the island is level with the surrounding ground, and in the northern part contains evidence of medieval ridge and furrow cultivation remains and earthworks which are believed to be the remains of former buildings. At the centre of the island is a building of brick and stone, which is Listed Grade II and is largely of 17th century construction, although parts are thought to be earlier. It was formerly a chapel of Bordesley Abbey and is now a domestic dwelling, known as The Moat House. It is excluded from the scheduling although the ground beneath it is included. To the east of the moat there are the remains of a large sub-rectangular fishpond measuring approximately 320m by 100m and orientated north to south, and retained on the south side by a substantial earthen dam 120m long by 10m wide and 4m to 6m high. The retaining dam is included in the area. The north and east sides of the pond were created by the natural rise of the land at the head of the valley. The pond provided fish for the inhabitants of the moated site and is separated from the moat by an additional external bank on the east side of the moat. Streams run along both the eastern arm of the moat and through the middle of the bed of the fishpond. Part of a stone-roofed conduit or sluice survives in the bank between the moat and the fishpond on the eastern side of the moated site approximately half way down the length of the bank, 120m south west of the north eastern angle of the moat. This consists of an earthen ditch measuring approximately 0.5m deep and 1m wide, roofed with a rubble-built stone arch of pre-industrial date. This feature can be traced for approximately 2m of its course. The survival of this conduit confirms that features associated with water management systems, at the moated site and fishpond, survive below ground. To the north of the moat is a large levelled platform and causeway thought to have been the location of buildings associated with the moated site. Moat House and its associated buildings, all modern surfaces 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:
Legacy System:


Aston, M., Sites and Monuments Record Card unpublished survey, 1970, survey and notes 1970's.
SMR Officers, Sites and Monuments Record Card unpublished notes, Descriptions since 1960's.


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

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