Moated site 140m east of Papworth Hall


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1019548

Date first listed: 05-Jan-2001


Ordnance survey map of Moated site 140m east of Papworth Hall
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Cambridgeshire

District: South Cambridgeshire (District Authority)

Parish: Papworth Everard

National Grid Reference: TL 29001 62790


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 140m east of Papworth Hall survives well. The island remains largely undisturbed and will retain buried evidence for structures and other features relating to medieval and post-medieval periods 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 is set. Comparison of this site with further examples, both locally and more widely, will provide valuable insight into 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 situated 140m to the east of Papworth Hall on the eastern edge of the village of Papworth Everard. The moated site includes a sub-circular island, with a diameter of approximately 50m, which is raised by at least 1m above the surrounding ground surface. The island is contained by a semi-waterfilled moat with a V-shaped profile which measures an average of 10m wide and up to 3m in depth. Causeways across the east and west sides of the moat and aligned with the east face of Papworth Hall were present in 1887, as shown on the first edition Ordnance Survey map of this date. The moated site is thought to represent the site of the manor of Papworth Everard, which in the 1160s was held in demesne by Everard de Beche and continued in his family until the second half of the 13th century. By the early 14th century it was in the ownership of the de la Haye family, passing through marriage to the Engaine and subsequently the Wimbish and St George families during the late 14th, 15th and 16th centuries. The manor house was occasionally mentioned from 1300 and is recorded in 1816 as being in a state of disrepair. The present Papworth Hall was built in 1808 and is thought to represent a successor to a building on the moated site. The grounds of the hall were landscaped at the beginning of the 19th century and an Italian garden, which was recorded in the 1890s within the moat, is no longer visible. The telegraph poles, wooden benches and concrete slabs are 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: 33284

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Salzman, L F, The Victoria History of the County of Cambridgeshire and the Isle of Ely, (1982), 357
Title: Ely Diocesan Tithe Map Source Date: 1821 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: CRO
Title: Ordnance 25" 1st Edition Map Source Date: 1887 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: CRO: 38.7
Title: Papworth Everard Enclosure Map Source Date: 1815 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: CRO: Q/RDc 42

End of official listing