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Curfew Tower

List Entry Summary

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.

Name: Curfew Tower

List entry Number: 1018450


The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Gloucestershire

District: Cotswold

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Moreton-in-Marsh

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 11-Jan-1955

Date of most recent amendment: 16-Nov-1998

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 31925

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

Reasons for Designation

The Curfew Tower at Moreton is one of the oldest structures in the town, and would have played an integral part in the life of the settlement from the 16th century onwards. It fronts directly on to the medieval and post-medieval market place and is known to have acted as a lock up for local drunks and minor criminals for much of its history as there was no other provision for their confinement within the town. The 17th century bequest of money to maintain the clock and bell also indicates the important role the tower played in the everyday life of the market town. Moreton-in-Marsh was the subject of an archaeological assessment by Gloucestershire County Council Archaeology Service in 1997. This provided information about the origin, development and plan of the town from its origins in the early medieval period to the present.


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


The monument includes a 16th century bell tower, known as the Curfew Tower, situated on the east side of the High Street on the corner of Oxford Street in the centre of Moreton-in-Marsh. Listed at Grade II, the Curfew Tower comprises a stone structure with a stone slate roof and gabled turret and may be the oldest public building in the town. It has a four-centred arched stone doorway on the west side, above which is a smaller loft doorway, while in the south elevation is a very small round-headed window. The tower contains a bell and clock dated to 1633 and 1648 respectively. Next to the bell is a pulley wheel and there is a weather vane in the form of a cockerel above the bell. The tower abuts buildings on its north and east sides. The interior of the tower measures about 2m square, and there is no east wall indicating that it must have been built abutting an earlier or contemporary structure which was replaced during the 18th century. There is evidence that the walls have been plastered in the past, and there are wooden floorboards over an earth floor. Against the north wall is a low bench made from a wooden plank, presumably added when the tower served as the town's lock up. There is a second floor about 4m above ground level, also made from wooden planks, but there is no modern access to this level. In the south eastern corner is a wooden casing running from the wooden platform to the ground and measuring about 0.6m by 0.25m, the function of which is unclear. Both doorframes have studded wooden doors which are securely padlocked. The bell in the tower is said to have been rung daily until 1860, and an inscription on the tower, which is no longer visible, recorded a gift of 10 shillings for a bell ringer and 20 shillings for keeping the clock in repair, given during the 17th century by Robert Fry. The clock mechanism was removed the 1950s. Excluded from the scheduling are the modern attachments on the west and south walls, including the list of tolls, modern and early modern fire hydrant signs and a plaque which records the location of a sewer junction.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Elrington, C R, O'Neil, H, The Victoria History of the County of Gloucestershire: Moreton-in-Marsh, (1976), 243

National Grid Reference: SP2048732443


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This copy shows the entry on 24-Sep-2018 at 01:01:47.

End of official listing