Medieval village remains 230m east of Baddiley Hall
- Heritage Category:
- Scheduled Monument
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
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This copy shows the entry on 13-Oct-2019 at 21:50:00.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)
- National Grid Reference:
- SJ 60803 50258
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
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.
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
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.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
- Legacy System number:
- Legacy System:
Books and journals
Morgan, P, Domesday Book, (1978)
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