Two moated sites at Huntingfield Hall


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1020646

Date first listed: 03-Sep-2002


Ordnance survey map of Two moated sites at Huntingfield Hall
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1020646 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 19-Dec-2018 at 00:10:59.


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

County: Norfolk

District: Breckland (District Authority)

Parish: Bradenham

National Grid Reference: TF 93393 09895, TF 93497 09884


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 two moated sites at Huntingfield Hall survive well as a series of earthwork and buried deposits, despite some superficial disturbance. The buried remains will include archaeological information concerning the construction of the moats, the layout and construction of the buildings which stood on the platforms and activities relating to their occupation. Waterlogged deposits in the moats will preserve organic remains (such as timber, leather and seeds) which will give an insight into domestic and economic activity on the site and the local environment in the past. Evidence for earlier land use, predating the construction of the moats, is also likely to be preserved in soils buried beneath the artificially raised ground. The association of the two moats gives added interest, providing evidence for the development of the medieval landscape.


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


The monument, which is in two separate areas of protection, includes two medieval moated sites at Huntingfield Hall. A rectangular moat, formerly occupied by Huntingfield Hall, lies approximately 40m east of another, square, moat. The moated sites are two of ten recorded in the modern civil parish of Bradenham (formerly the parishes of East and West Bradenham).

In 1086 three separate land holdings were recorded in Bradenham, one of which was in the possession of Ralph Baynard. In the 12th century Baynard's land was held by Saer de Quincy, Earl of Winchester. The land subsequently descended from the de Quincys to the Lacy family, earls of Lincoln, and in the mid-13th century, the de Huntingfields purchased the manor from John de Lacy. In the 14th century the land was conveyed to the Abbot of Bury, remaining in the hands of the abbey until the Dissolution. This, and other manors in East Bradenham, were subsequently united in the possession of the Hungates who are said to have held Huntingfield Hall from the early 17th century. Huntingfield Hall, which stood on the eastern moated platform and is depicted on the 1840 tithe map, was demolished in about 1860. A smaller 19th century house now stands on the site of the former hall.

The eastern of the two moated platforms, or islands, is roughly rhomboidal in plan. The platform measures up to 110m north-south by 50m, with an elongated south western corner. A sub-rectangular hollow was formerly located at the south west corner of the platform, lying parallel with the west arm of the moat. This hollow, shown on earlier maps, measured approximately 14m by 6m and is believed to mark the location of a fishpond which will survive as a buried feature. The platform is enclosed by a partly water-filled moat measuring up to 8m in width and 2m deep with steep sides and a flat base. The central portion of the west arm of the moat, about 20m in length, is infilled but will survive as a buried feature. The infilled portion may indicate the position of an earlier access point. External banks lie alongside the east and south arms of the moat, measuring up to 3m wide and 1.5m high and 1m wide and 0.5m high respectively.

The western moated platform is roughly square in plan and measures approximately 50m in width. The platform is enclosed on the south, west and north sides by a partly water-filled moat measuring up to 8m wide and up to 2m deep. The east arm of the moat, visible as a shallow depression at the north east corner, has been infilled but will survive as a buried feature. The east and west arms of the moat formerly extended to the north, measuring approximately 20m and 8m in length respectively. These extensions, shown on old maps, will survive as buried features and are believed to be associated with the water management system. An external bank, measuring 1.5m wide and standing 0.5m high, lies alongside the south arm of the moat.

The house, all outbuildings, boundary walls, fence posts, modern surfaces, hard standing and telegraph poles 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.


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

Legacy System number: 35061

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Blomefield, F, History of the County of Norfolk: Volume VI, (1984)
Brown, P (ed), Doomsday Book: Norfolk, (1984)
NMR, 358532, (2001)
Norfolk SMR, NF1036, (2001)
Title: East Bradenham Tithe Award, DN/TA 42 Source Date: 1838 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:
Title: East Bradenham Tithe Award, DN/TA 42 Source Date: 1838 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

End of official listing