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Moated site and part of the Medieval settlement of Tottington, south-west of St Andrew's Church

A Scheduled Monument in Thompson, Norfolk

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Latitude: 52.5231 / 52°31'23"N

Longitude: 0.7883 / 0°47'17"E

OS Eastings: 589262.43619

OS Northings: 295346.624209

OS Grid: TL892953

Mapcode National: GBR RBY.VGB

Mapcode Global: VHKBT.MV34

Entry Name: Moated site and part of the Medieval settlement of Tottington, south-west of St Andrew's Church

Scheduled Date: 19 February 1976

Last Amended: 7 November 2016

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1003949

English Heritage Legacy ID: NF 317

County: Norfolk

Civil Parish: Thompson

Built-Up Area: Thompson

Traditional County: Norfolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Norfolk


Moated site most likely of C13-C14 in origin and part of the associated Medieval settlement of Tottington. The village was abandoned in 1942 following the acquisition of the site by the MoD as a military training area.

Source: Historic England


The moated platform lies approximately 500m south-west of St Andrew's Church, Tottington in the corner of the field, immediately north of the stream that feeds it. The village as a whole is located on a band of loamy soil sandwiched between freely draining sandy Breckland soil to the north and acid peaty soils to the south.

The stream fed moat survives on all sides of a rectangular platform to a depth of c1.2m and approximately 5m wide with a causeway midway along the northern arm. The southern arm is formed of the stream feeding the moat and the north, east and west ditches are waterlogged but with no standing water at the time of the site visit (September 2015). The moat surrounds a rectangular platform measuring approximately 65m north to south and 50m east to west with earthworks evident on the surface of the platform although the vegetation at the time of the visit made it difficult to determine the exact alignment of these. An external bank is evident on the east and west sides, that to the west being slightly more pronounced, surviving to a height of approximately 0.4m.

Curving from the south east corner of the moat and continuing north through the field is a large ditch c1.5m deep and c5m wide. It continues northwards to south-west of the churchyard. This takes the form of a sunken trackway leading northwards to the church and southwards possibly providing a ford over the stream at the southern end. A second ditch running east to west intersects the north-south track approximately 90m north-east of the moat. East of the intersection are the remains of buildings, possibly those depicted on the 1883 1:2500 OS map which appear at that time to be associated with two linear crofts running to the south, a well and a possible second toft or outbuilding. These survive as clear earthworks with building rubble exposed in places on the surface and probably represent the C17 house mentioned in the Norfolk Historic Environment Record (HER 5065).

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

The moated site south-west of Tottington Church and part of the medieval settlement of Tottington is scheduled for the following principal reasons:

* Survival: the moat is a good example of its type with the principal features surviving well as clearly defined earthworks;

* Potential: there is good evidence for the survival of significant archaeological deposits including structural remains, artefactual evidence, waterlogged organic material and a buried medieval land surface which, together has the potential to enhance our knowledge and understanding of the settlement and the wider social and economic landscape in which it functioned;

* Diversity of features: for the range and diversity of features represented on the site which adds to the archaeological potential and consequently the quality and depth of interpretation and understanding of the abandoned medieval village;

* Group value: it has strong spatial relationship with Tottington Church (NHLE 1342814 listed Grade II*) and the corresponding moated platform to the north-west of the church (NHLE 1003948).

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Batcock, N, Ruined and Disused churches of Norfolk, (1991), 2, 24, 35,46, 50
Roberts, B K, Wrathmell, S, An Atlas of Rural Settlement in England, (2003)
Maps and Aerial Photographs, accessed 21st Septemeber 2016 from
Norfolk Heritage Explorer. Parish Summary, Tottington, accessed 24th May 2016 from
Norfolk Historic Envirnment Recod no.5065

Source: Historic England

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