Animal pound 140m north west of Riverside, Wollerton


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1020849

Date first listed: 23-Apr-2003


Ordnance survey map of Animal pound 140m north west of Riverside, Wollerton
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Shropshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Hodnet

National Grid Reference: SJ 62319 29718


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

Reasons for Designation

The term animal pound is derived from the Anglo-Saxon word `pund' meaning enclosure, and is used to describe stock-proof areas for confining stray or illegally pastured stock and legally-kept animals rounded up at certain times of the year from areas of common grazing. The earliest documentary references to pounds date from the 12th century, and they continued to be constructed and used throughout the medieval and post-medieval periods. Most surviving examples are likely to be less than three centuries old, and most will have fallen into disuse in the late 19th or early 20th century. Animal pounds are usually located in villages or towns though some lie in more open locations, particularly on the edge of old woodlands and commons. Construction methods vary according to the availability of building materials: stone, brick, fencing, iron railings and earthworks being used to enclose areas ranging from 4m by 6m to over 0.5ha. The walls are normally about 1.5m high, although greater heights are not uncommon as attempts to prevent poundbreach. In addition to stock control, animals were sometimes taken as a `distress' (seizure of property in lieu of debt or to enforce payment) and kept under the care of the pinder or hayward until redeemed. Pounds are usually unroofed and have a single entrance, although some have additional low entrances to allow the passage of sheep and pigs while retaining larger stock. Other features include rudimentary shelters for the pound-keeper, laid floors, drainage channels, troughs and internal partitions to separate the beasts. Animal pounds are widely distributed throughout England, with particular concentrations in the west and Midlands. About 250 examples are known to survive in fair condition, with perhaps another 150 examples recorded either as remains, or from documentary evidence alone. Pounds illustrate a specialised aspect of past social organisation and animal husbandry, and reflect the use and former appearance of the surrounding landscape. All examples surviving in good condition, particularly those supported by historical evidence for ownership and function, are considered worthy of protection.

The animal pound 140m north west of Riverside, Wollerton is a good example of this class of monument. It indicates the importance of moving and empounding livestock to the local rural economy during the 18th and 19th centuries. The extant structural remains, together with the buried remains of the internal floor surface and associated features, such as post holes and drainage channels, will provide information about the construction of post-medieval animal pounds and about contemporary herding practices. As a prominent feature at a road junction, this pound continues to act as an important local landmark.


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


The monument includes the standing structural and buried remains of an animal pound of probable 18th century date, which is a Listed Building Grade II. It is situated on a slight rise at the intersection of roads at the centre of the hamlet of Wollerton.

The animal pound is a brick-built `horseshoe'-shaped enclosure, circular with a straight-sided portion to the north west, with contemporary, regularly placed internal and external brick-built piers. The brickwork bonding type is English Garden Wall and this is surmounted by dressed sandstone coping stones. Its overall dimensions are approximately 4m south west to north east by 5m north west to south east, and it stands to a maximum height of 1.87m. The entrance into the pound is at the north west and is 1.72m wide. Parts of the wall, especially to the south, were repaired in the late 20th century.

The concrete gate posts, the wooden gate and the road surface are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath all these features is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 1 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: 34925

Legacy System: RSM

End of official listing