Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Shaw Fosse moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Humbleton, East Riding of Yorkshire

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Latitude: 53.7983 / 53°47'53"N

Longitude: -0.1377 / 0°8'15"W

OS Eastings: 522754.281869

OS Northings: 435165.272614

OS Grid: TA227351

Mapcode National: GBR WSGJ.Z4

Mapcode Global: WHHGL.VSLH

Entry Name: Shaw Fosse moated site

Scheduled Date: 25 November 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007847

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21205

County: East Riding of Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Humbleton

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): East Riding of Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Humbleton St Peter

Church of England Diocese: York


The moat is the Shaw Fosse moated site at Humbleton. It includes a sub-
rectangular island enclosed within a dry moat.
The island enclosed by the moat measures 105m long east-west by a maximum of
30m wide north-south. The northern and western arms of the moat are between
12m and 15m wide and up to 4m deep. The southern and eastern arms are up to
10m wide and 3m deep. Access is provided to the island by two modern earthen
causeways; one crosses the southern arm, the other the eastern arm.
The moated site is thought to have been a grange of Thornton Abbey which owned
estates in and around Humbleton.

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.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

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.

Shaw Fosse survives well and will retain evidence of the buildings which once
occupied the island. It has also been identified as a monastic farm or
grange. Such sites were fairly numerous in the medieval period but only a
small number can now be positively identified on the ground. This example
will contribute to the study of the economy of its parent house, Thornton

Source: Historic England


3094, Humberside SMR,

Source: Historic England

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