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Great Winsey moated site and fishpond, 1.4km south west of Finchingfield church

A Scheduled Monument in Finchingfield, Essex

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.9641 / 51°57'50"N

Longitude: 0.434 / 0°26'2"E

OS Eastings: 567315.91983

OS Northings: 232315.742376

OS Grid: TL673323

Mapcode National: GBR NF8.VYY

Mapcode Global: VHJHW.GWSN

Entry Name: Great Winsey moated site and fishpond, 1.4km south west of Finchingfield church

Scheduled Date: 18 July 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008977

English Heritage Legacy ID: 20754

County: Essex

Civil Parish: Finchingfield

Traditional County: Essex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Essex

Church of England Parish: Finchingfield St John Baptist

Church of England Diocese: Chelmsford

Details

The monument at Great Winsey includes a moated site situated on a hilltop
north of the River Pant, 1.4km south west of Finchingfield church. The moated
site is rectangular in shape and measures 50m north east-south west by 40m
north west-south east. Although only three moat arms are now visible, a
fourth, north western, arm has been infilled and is still preserved as a
buried feature. The three visible arms are seasonally water-filled and measure
an average of 9m in width and 2m in depth. The island is flat and was
occupied, prior to its demolition in 1946, by a 17th century house with 18th
century additions. Some building rubble from the house forms a scatter over
the island.
A fishpond 12m north east of the moated site measures 31m east-west by a
maximum of 12m north-south. The pond is also seasonally water-filled and
is about 1m deep. The strip of land 3m wide between the moat and the fishpond
is also included in the scheduling as it is considered to contain the buried
remains of the water channel which linked the two.
The site is refered to as 'Wenelishey' in the 14th century.

MAP EXTRACT
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 Great Winsey is well preserved and will retain
archaeological information relating to its construction and occupation. The
waterlogged ditches will retain environmental evidence relating to the economy
of its inhabitants and the landscape in which they lived.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Books and journals
Reaney, PH, Place names of Essex, (1935), 428
Other
NAR No TL 63 SE 9, Information from NAR,

Source: Historic England

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