Ancient Monuments

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Old Little Humber moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Paull, East Riding of Yorkshire

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Latitude: 53.6956 / 53°41'44"N

Longitude: -0.1749 / 0°10'29"W

OS Eastings: 520598.359212

OS Northings: 423674.248757

OS Grid: TA205236

Mapcode National: GBR WT6P.XZ

Mapcode Global: WHHH5.8CYQ

Entry Name: Old Little Humber moated site

Scheduled Date: 11 May 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008048

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21200

County: East Riding of Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Paull

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): East Riding of Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Paull St Andrew and St Mary

Church of England Diocese: York


The monument is the moated site at Old Little Humber. It includes the remains
of a moated site and adjacent earthworks which are contemporary with it. The
island enclosed by the moat measures 60m north-south and 40m east-west. The
moat which surrounds it remains visible on the north, east, and west sides
where it is 10m wide and up to 1.5m deep. The bottom of this moat remains
waterlogged. The southern arm of the moat has been largely in-filled, possibly
when the farm and associated buildings were constructed in this area. The
south end of the western arm of the moat has been brick-revetted late in its
history to form a washing pond for animals from the adjacent farm.
At the north-western corner of the moat a wide drainage ditch continues the
line of the moat north for 50m. The character of this ditch is comparable to
the adjacent moat and it is interpreted as an element of the medieval site.
Immediately to the east of this ditch is an embanked trackway which may have
provided access to the moated site. At the north-eastern corner of the moat a
similar drainage ditch extends north from the moat before curving to the east.
This is also interpreted as an element of the moated site as it defines a
small additional enclosure within its curve, the southern edge of which is
marked by an earthen bank 10m wide and 0.5m high.
To the north of the moated site a rectangular pond may have had medieval
origins and been associated with the moated site. It is not included in the
scheduling as it has recently been scoured out and is not thought to retain
any archaeological remains.
This site was originally held by the monks of Albermarle and was a manor from
1260. In 1395 the property was conveyed to Kirkstall Abbey in West Yorkshire
and was held by them until the Dissolution of the Monasteries by Henry VIII.
The area around the site was cultivated in the Middle Ages, evidenced by an
area of ridge and furrow which survives to the west of the monument.
A brick shed and a brick-built air-raid shelter which stand on the island are
excluded from the scheduling although the ground beneath them is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

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.

The moated site at Old Little Humber survives well. The island is largely
unencumbered by modern building and will retain evidence of the buildings
which formerly occupied it. The surrounding moat survives well and retains
conditions suitable for the preservation of organic materials.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Yorkshire - The East Riding, (1984), 115
Le Patourel, H E J, Moated site of Yorkshire, (1973), 114

Source: Historic England

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