Moated site and associated garden immediately east of The Hall


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1019525

Date first listed: 09-Feb-2001


Ordnance survey map of Moated site and associated garden immediately east of The Hall
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This copy shows the entry on 16-Jan-2019 at 16:20:38.


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

County: Suffolk

District: St. Edmundsbury (District Authority)

Parish: Great Bradley

National Grid Reference: TL 67476 53092


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.

The moated site and associated garden immediately east of The Hall survive 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 infilled sections 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.

The ornamental canal to the east of the moated site is a type of water feature often associated with early post-medieval gardens attached to high-status houses and the area between the moated site and the canal will preserve evidence for the layout of the formal gardens including pastures and planting beds.

Comparative studies between this site and with further examples, both 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 and associated garden immediately east of Great Bradley Hall and approximately 50m to the south of the parish church of St Mary.

The moated site includes a roughly rectangular island which measures up to 80m north-south by 60m east-west. This is contained on the south side, part of the north side and the southern end of the east and west sides by a partly waterfilled moat which measures up to 18m wide and 4m deep. The north western corner of the moat, together with the greater part of the eastern arm, were infilled during the 19th century and now survive as buried features. Early maps indicate that access to the island was via causeways across the east and west arms of the moat. Today the island is approached across the infilled western arm of the moat.

Approximately 10m to the east of the south east corner of the moat, and on the same alignment as the southern arm, is a pond about 50m in length and 12m wide. The eastern end of this feature adjoins the southern end of a rectangular pond aligned north-south and measuring approximately 118m in length, 10m in width and at least 2m in depth. The north-south pond, which still contains some water, is thought to represent the remains of an ornamental canal, and it is considered that the two, which may originally have been connected, were water features associated with an early post-medieval formal garden to the east of the moat.

The moat is believed to represent the site of the manor of Great Bradley which was held by Sir Hugh de Lopham at the beginning of the 14th century. Sir Hugh granted the manor by deed to Sir John Boteturte, and it continued in the family of Sir John until the 15th century.

Great Bradley Hall, a Listed Building Grade II sited immediately to the west of the moat and dated to the 16th century, is thought to have succeeded an earlier house on the island. A converted stable block, part of a farmyard complex to the north, was partly built over the north west corner of the moat in the 19th century.

The stable block is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it 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: 33289

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Lansdell, W, Moated Sites Research Group, (1978)
Copinger, W, 'The Manors of Suffolk' in Great Bradley Manor, , Vol. V, (1909), 194-195
Ryder, S, (1999)
Title: Great Radley Tithe Map and Apportionment Source Date: 1843 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: SRO(Bury): T28/1,2
Title: Tithe Map and Apportionment of Great Bradley Source Date: 1843 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: SRO(Bury): T28/1,2

End of official listing