Medieval village remains 230m east of Baddiley Hall

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018822

Date first listed: 21-Jan-1999

Map

Ordnance survey map of Medieval village remains 230m east of Baddiley Hall
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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Location

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

District: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Baddiley

National Grid Reference: SJ 60803 50258

Summary

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

Reasons for Designation

Medieval rural settlements in England were marked by great regional diversity in form, size and type, and the protection of their archaeological remains needs to take these differences into account. To do this, England has been divided into three broad Provinces on the basis of each area's distinctive mixture of nucleated and dispersed settlements. These can be further divided into sub-Provinces and local regions, possessing characteristics which have gradually evolved during the past 1500 years or more. This monument lies in the Cheshire Plain sub-Province of the Northern and Western Province, a gently rolling plain of red marl covered by ice-carried clays, sands and gravels. It is diversified by occasional sandstone escarpments, notably the Central Cheshire Ridge east of the Dee valley. It has lower densities of nucleated settlements than surrounding areas, and high concentrations of dispersed farmsteads and small hamlets. In the Wirral and the lower Dee and Weaver valleys, the settlement mix is different, with low and medium densities of dispersed farmsteads intermixed with more frequent villages. Domesday Book records a thin scatter of settlement in the Wirral, the Dee lowlands and the central and southern plain in 1086, with much woodland.

Medieval villages were organised agricultural communities, sited at the centre of a parish or township, that shared resources such as arable land, meadow and woodland. Village plans varied enormously, but where they survive as earthworks their most distinguishing features include roads and minor tracks, platforms on which stood houses and other buildings such as barns, enclosed crofts and small enclosed paddocks. They frequently included the parish church within their boundaries, and as part of the manorial system most villages included one or more manorial centres which may also survive as visible remains as well as below ground deposits. In the central province of England, villages were the most distinctive aspect of medieval life, and their archaeological remains are one of the most important sources of understanding of rural life in the five or more centuries following the Norman Conquest. Medieval villages were supported by a communal system of agriculture based on large , unenclosed open arable fields. These large fields were subdivided into strips (known as lands) which were allocated to individual tenants. The cultivation of these strips with heavy ploughs pulled by teams of oxen produced long wide ridges, and the resultant `ridge and furrow' where it survives is the most obvious indication of the open field system. Individual strips or lands were laid out in groups known as furlongs defined by terminal headlands at the plough turning points and lateral grass balks. Furlongs were in turn grouped into large open fields. Well-preserved ridge and furrow, especially in its original context adjacent to village earthworks, is both an important source of information about medieval agrarian life and a distinctive contribution to the character of the historic landscape. It is usually now covered by the hedges and walls of subsequent field enclosures. The earthwork remains of a former medieval settlement at Baddiley Hall survive well. The remains will contain important evidence for the life and farming practices of a small medieval community, and waterlogged deposits in the area beside the former watercourse will preserve organic remains of the trees and plants and as timber from the settlement. In addition the terraces from an extended garden to Baddiley Hall may reflect further remains of the original village structures.

History

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

Details

The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of an abandoned medieval settlement in the shallow valley to the east of Baddiley Hall. The remains have been truncated by the building of the Shropshire Union Canal at the eastern end of the complex. This settlement was included in the Domesday survey of 1086 as a small manor with one plough. In the later medieval period the present church was built on the site of an older one which was first recorded in 1308. The manorial centre at this time was probably the moated site at SJ60805080 which has been destroyed. This was followed by the present Baddiley Hall which dates from the 17th century. The village remains include a series of tofts and crofts (house platforms and their associated enclosures) situated along the course of a small stream, now culverted, running to the east from the boundary of the hall garden. There are platforms for at least nine houses and barn buildings which are situated on either side of the watercourse. Modern agriculture has levelled any other remains which may have existed on the top of the slopes above. Immediately adjoining the ha-ha which forms the eastern boundary of Baddiley Hall are two terraces which may have been made as part of a former garden scheme attached to the hall. They may also reflect medieval field boundaries associated with the village remains.

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

Legacy

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

Legacy System number: 30389

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Morgan, P, Domesday Book, (1978)
Other
SMR, (1998)

End of official listing