North Grange moated site


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018275

Date first listed: 16-Jan-1998


Ordnance survey map of North Grange moated site
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Suffolk

District: Suffolk Coastal (District Authority)

Parish: Sibton

National Grid Reference: TM 36304 70165


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.

North Grange moated site survives well as a whole, unencumbered by modern building, and although the western and northern arms of the moat are now largely or wholly infilled, they will survive as buried features. The raised central platform, together with the surrounding moat ditches and the lower fills within the ditches, will retain archaeological information relating to the construction and use of the site, and organic materials, including environmental evidence, are likely to be preserved in waterlogged deposits in the eastern and southern arms of the moat. Evidence for earlier land use will also be preserved in soils buried beneath the central platform. The documented association between North Grange and Sibton Abbey, indicating that the moated site was within a farm complex owned and run by the monastic community, is of particular interest. The Cistercian order pioneered the system of farming represented by monastic granges, subsequently adopted by other monastic orders.


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


The monument includes a moated site which is located 150m to the south of North Grange Farmhouse, on a hill above the valley of the River Yox. To the south east of the moat, on the lower slopes of the valley, are the ruins of Sibton Abbey, a foundation of the Cistercian order established in 1150, which is the subject of a separate scheduling. The eastern and southern arms of the moat, which are water-filled and range from about 10m to 15m in width, enclose two sides of a rectangular central platform measuring approximately 67m north-south by 40m and raised up to 0.4m above the prevailing ground surface. A third arm of the moat, enclosing the western side of the platform, is now largely infilled but can be traced as a slight linear depression about 13m wide in the ground surface. The northern arm has become completely infilled but, although no longer visible, it will survive as a buried feature. The probable line of the inner edge of both this and the western arm is marked by a later field ditch about 2m wide which connects with an outlet drain issuing from the north end of the eastern arm. In the south western corner of the central platform, and included in the scheduling, there is a circular, brick built tank and other brick and concrete remains of a 19th century filter pumping system which formerly supplied water to the house now known as Sibton Abbey, 820m to the south west. In deeds relating to the sale of Sibton Abbey and its adjoining lands in the early 17th century, North Grange is referred to as a former cell of this abbey.

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: 21438

Legacy System: RSM


Levett-Scrivener, J E, (1996)
microfilm copy in SRO: ref J 400/2, MS copy of deed of conveyance, Davy Coll. BL Add Mss 19077-19113,
NMR ref TM 37 SE 1,

End of official listing