The Mount: a motte castle 200m west of Weston Farm
- Heritage Category:
- Scheduled Monument
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
- Date of most recent amendment:
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This copy shows the entry on 23-Jan-2020 at 11:31:08.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- Shropshire (Unitary Authority)
- National Grid Reference:
- SJ 56400 29123
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the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other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.
Despite its partial use as a quarry for soil, the motte castle known as The Mount is a good example of this class of monument. The motte will retain evidence of its construction and the buried remains of structures built upon its summit. Organic remains preserved in the buried ground surface beneath the motte, and deposited within the encircling ditch, will provide information about the local environment and the use of the land prior to and following the construction of the motte. It remains a prominent feature within the landscape.
The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a motte castle,
occupying an elevated position with commanding views of the north Shropshire
plain and the hills of the Welsh borderland beyond. It is situated 820m to the
south west of Red Castle, which is the subject of a separate scheduling.
The flat-topped, steep-sided circular motte measures approximately 30m at its
base and between 15m to 18m across the top, and stands about 4.2m high. The
size of the motte indicates that it was only large enough to support a small
structure such as a watchtower. The motte is surrounded by a ditch about 7m
wide, which on the eastern side is visible as a shallow depression 0.5m deep.
To the north and west this ditch has been infilled, but will survive as a
buried feature. Two depressions on the top and on the south eastern side of
the motte are the result of quarrying for earth in modern times.
All fence posts 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
Hill, J, Antquities of Hawkestone, (1829), 12-13
Hill, J, Antquities of Hawkestone, (1829), 53-54
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