Ancient Monuments

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Castle Hill, a motte and bailey castle 900m NNE of All Saint's Church

A Scheduled Monument in Wing, Buckinghamshire

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Latitude: 51.897 / 51°53'49"N

Longitude: -0.7214 / 0°43'17"W

OS Eastings: 488071.69337

OS Northings: 222823.533679

OS Grid: SP880228

Mapcode National: GBR D22.4D6

Mapcode Global: VHDTT.FLY3

Entry Name: Castle Hill, a motte and bailey castle 900m NNE of All Saint's Church

Scheduled Date: 30 May 1938

Last Amended: 1 October 1992

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1009535

English Heritage Legacy ID: 19057

County: Buckinghamshire

Civil Parish: Wing

Traditional County: Buckinghamshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Buckinghamshire

Church of England Parish: Wing with Grove

Church of England Diocese: Oxford


The monument includes the remains of a motte and bailey castle situated in a
defensive position on the edge of a low hill overlooking ground falling to the
north. The motte itself survives well as a roughly circular mound 30m in
diameter, slightly truncated around the south-east quarter where a modern road
encroaches on the base of the mound. It stands up to 6m high on the north-
west side and 4m high on the south-east side. The top of the mound has been
disturbed by the line of an old trench 0.5m deep which runs roughly east to
west, splitting the mound summit to give a double lobed appearance. There is
no trace of the surrounding ditch from which the material for the construction
of the mound was quarried, though this probably survives as a buried feature
c.5m wide. To the north-east of the mound is a low curving scarp 0.4m high
which runs for some 30m before being truncated by the line of the modern High
Street. A second curving scarp up to 1m high runs roughly north from the base
of the mound for some 40m. These scarps are considered to be associated with
an original bailey.

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

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Motte and bailey castles are medieval fortifications introduced into Britain
by the Normans. They comprised a large conical mound of earth or rubble, the
motte, surmounted by a palisade and a stone or timber tower. In a majority of
examples an embanked enclosure containing additional buildings, the bailey,
adjoined the motte. Motte castles and motte-and-bailey castles acted as
garrison forts during offensive military operations, as strongholds, and, in
many cases, as aristocratic residences and as centres of local or royal
administration. Built in towns, villages and open countryside, motte and
bailey castles generally occupied strategic positions dominating their
immediate locality and, as a result, are the most visually impressive
monuments of the early post-Conquest period surviving in the modern landscape.
Over 600 motte castles or motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally,
with examples known from most regions. As one of a restricted range of
recognised early post-Conquest monuments, they are particularly important for
the study of Norman Britain and the development of the feudal system. Although
many were occupied for only a short period of time, motte castles continued to
be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they
were superseded by other types of castle.

Castle Hill motte survives comparatively well as an earthwork and is
significant in the historical development of the area.

Source: Historic England

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