Moated site at Moat House Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1019178

Date first listed: 09-Nov-2000


Ordnance survey map of Moated site at Moat House Farm
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This copy shows the entry on 12-Dec-2018 at 20:46:48.


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

County: Cambridgeshire

District: South Cambridgeshire (District Authority)

Parish: Kingston

National Grid Reference: TL 34422 55343


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.

Despite some infilling of the moat, the moated site at Moat House Farm survives well. The island is largely undisturbed by post-medieval and modern activity and will retain buried evidence for structures and other features relating to former periods of occupation. The buried silts in the base of the ditches will contain both artefacts relating to the period of occupation and environmental evidence for the appearance of the landscape in which the moated site was set.

Comparative studies between this site and with further examples locally and more widely, will provide valuable insights into the development of the nature of settlement in medieval England.


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


The monument includes a medieval moated site at Moat House Farm, 210m to the south west of Kingston parish church.

The moated site includes a roughly rectangular island which measures up to 64m north west-south east by 44m north east-south west and is raised by up to 1m above the surrounding ground surface. This is contained by a partly water-filled moat, measuring up to 9m wide and 2m deep on the north west and north east sides. The eastern corner of the moat, together with the south eastern arm and the greater part of the south western arm, were infilled during the 19th century and now survive as buried features. During the same period the western corner of the moat was extended to form a pond. Early maps indicate that access to the island was originally by bridge. Today the island is approached across the infilled south eastern arm of the moat.

Near the centre of the island is the present Moat House, a Listed Building Grade II, believed to date from the 16th century, which is excluded from the scheduling although the ground beneath it is included. A well, now covered over, lies immediately to the south east of the house.

The moated site is thought to represent the site of the manor of Kingston St George which is first recorded in 1212 when Maud de Dive held a fee in the parishes of Kingston, Hatley and Trumpington. In 1235 William St George held one fee in Hatley and Kingston of the fee of Maud de Dive and the manor remained in the St George family until 1556 when Francis St George conveyed it to a Robert Catlyn. In 1569 the manor was united with the manor of Kingston Wood. More recently the moated site has also been known as Library Farm and Queen's College Farm, after Queen's College, Cambridge, who owned it from the early 18th century.

Moat House, the terrace, summerhouse, sheep house, garage, sheds, greenhouses, fences and gates and all made-up surfaces are all excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath these features is included.

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: 33276

Legacy System: RSM


RCHM: West Cambs, (1968)
Title: 1st Edition Ordnance Survey Map Source Date: 1886 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: CRO: XLVI:9/10
Title: Enclosure map of Kingston Source Date: 1810 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: CRO: Q/RDc 25
VCH: Cambs, (1973)

End of official listing