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Motte castle immediately north east of Church Farm

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Motte castle immediately north east of Church Farm

List entry Number: 1019014


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


District: Shropshire

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: Rushbury

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 09-Nov-1972

Date of most recent amendment: 14-Mar-2000

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 32328

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

Motte castles are medieval fortifications introduced into Britain by the Normans. They comprised a large conical mound of earth or rubble, the motte, surmounted by a palisade and a stone or timber tower. In a majority of examples an embanked enclosure containing additional buildings, the bailey, adjoined the motte. Motte castles and motte-and-bai1ey castles acted as garrison forts during offensive military operations, as strongholds, and, in many cases, as aristocratic residences and as centres of local or royal administration. Built in towns, villages and open countryside, motte castles generally occupied strategic positions dominating their immediate locality and, as a result, are the most visually impressive monuments of the early post-Conquest period surviving in the modern landscape. Over 600 motte castles and motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. Some 100-150 examples do not have baileys and are classified as motte castles. As one of a restricted range of recognised early post-Conquest monuments, they are particularly important for the study of Norman Britain and the development of the feudal system. Although many were occupied for only a short period of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle.

The motte castle immediately north east of Church Farm is a well-preserved example of this class of monument, despite some disturbance to the top of the mound and parts of the surrounding ditch, and the truncation of the counterscarp bank. The mound will retain evidence relating to the nature of occupation and the types of structures that were built upon its summit. Organic remains preserved within the buried ground surfaces under the mound and the counterscarp bank, and within the surrounding ditch, will provide valuable evidence about the local environment and the use of the land before and after the motte castle was constructed. The importance of the monument is further enhanced by its proximity and contemporary association with St Peter's Church. The monument remains a prominent feature within the landscape.


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


The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a motte castle, situated to the north east of St Peter's Church. The church was founded in the Anglo-Saxon period but altered following the Norman Conquest. The castle mound occupies sloping ground, falling away in all directions except to the south west. From this position there are extensive views of Ape Dale and the surrounding uplands. The mound is oval in plan, approximately 44m by 58m at its base and about 38m by 48m across its top. The eastern part is steep-sided and stands up to 4m high. In order to create a flat top the south western portion of the mound has only been slightly raised, about 0.5m, above the level of the surrounding ground. A ditch, averaging 5m wide, surrounds the mound. It is most evident on the western and northern sides where it is bounded by a counterscarp bank, about 8m wide. Much of the rest of the ditch has been filled in, but will survive as a buried feature. The south eastern portion of this ditch has been substantially modified by modern landscaping, and as a consequence is not included in the scheduling. The counterscarp bank has been truncated by the creation of a pond to the north east and farm buildings to the south west. There are a number of features which are excluded from the scheduling: these are the concrete base of the former hen house built on top of the motte, the water trough, all fences, gates and a stile although the ground beneath all these features is included.

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

Selected Sources

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

National Grid Reference: SO 51440 91937


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This copy shows the entry on 14-Dec-2017 at 09:12:43.

End of official listing