Moated site 170m south west of Tyrell's Hall


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


Ordnance survey map of Moated site 170m south west of Tyrell's Hall
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

South Cambridgeshire (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
TL 39399 47549

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.

The moated site 170m south west of Tyrell's Hall survives well. The island remains largely undisturbed and will retain buried evidence for structures and other features relating to the period of occupation. The buried silts in the base of the moat 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.

Comparison between this site and others, both locally and more widely, will provide valuable insights into the nature of settlement and society in the medieval period.


The monument includes a medieval moated site located 170m south west of Tyrell's Hall and 130m north east of Shepreth parish church. In 1764 the moated enclosure was amongst the lands held by William Woodham, the owner of the manors of Docwras and Tyrells. In the 11th century the manor of Tyrell's was held by two separate estates and the moat may represent the site of one of these.

The moated site includes a roughly rectangular shaped island measuring up to 58m north west-south east by 50m north east-south west. The island is enclosed by a water-filled moat which measures up to 13m wide and approximately 1m deep. The shallow causeway across the north west arm of the moat is thought to represent the original access to the moat. A bridge across the south east arm of the moat is thought to be modern.

The moat is now linked to a number of drainage channels, thought to be of post-medieval date; only a small section of a leat on the north-eastern corner, which is considered to be of medieval origin, is included in the scheduling.

The bridges across the south east arm of the moat and the northern leat are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Cambridgeshire253-257
Title: Enclosure map of Shepreth Source Date: 1811 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: CRO: Q/RD 210
Title: Plan of all enclosures belonging to William Woodham at Shepreth Source Date: 1764 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: CRO: R53/4/160
Title: Tithe Map of Shepreth Source Date: 1844 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: CRO: 296/P43


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

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