Ancient Monuments

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Ashton Manor moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Ashton, Northamptonshire

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Latitude: 52.1433 / 52°8'36"N

Longitude: -0.8842 / 0°53'3"W

OS Eastings: 476452.701053

OS Northings: 250036.34145

OS Grid: SP764500

Mapcode National: GBR BXF.R7R

Mapcode Global: VHDSK.MDF8

Entry Name: Ashton Manor moated site

Scheduled Date: 22 January 1992

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1010809

English Heritage Legacy ID: 13615

County: Northamptonshire

Civil Parish: Ashton

Built-Up Area: Ashton

Traditional County: Northamptonshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northamptonshire

Church of England Parish: Ashton St Michael and All Angels

Church of England Diocese: Peterborough


Ashton Manor moated site lies on the north side of the village just to the
north west of St Michael's church.
This oval moated site is between 65m and 75m in diameter and encompasses
Ashton Manor and its outbuildings. The present entrance to the island may be
the location of the original entrance causeway. The ditch of the moat is
almost complete, but has been slightly altered on the north side by the
placing of a farm track and on the south side a portion has been destroyed by
buildings and a garden. The remaining ditch is U-shaped, about 10m wide and
varies in depth between one and two metres around the site. It was originally
fed by springs on the south east corner and on the eastern side the ditch is
still waterlogged. On the west and north sides of the moat, an outer bank
0.5m high is visible. Most of the moat ditch and part of the island are in
use as a private garden and the northern part of the moat ditch lies in the
pasture land of an adjacent farm.
The level oval moat island is occupied by Ashton Manor which is a Grade II
listed building. Most of the present house is of 17th century date but it is
considered to have earlier origins.
The manor house, outbuildings and garden walls on the site and the made-up
roads and pathways are excluded from the scheduling but the ground beneath
is included.

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.

Ashton Manor moated site is of unusual type and plan, its oval shape being
considered indicative of an early medieval date. The moat island has
potential for the preservation of earlier buildings and parts of the ditch are
still waterlogged providing conditions favourable to the survival of
environmental evidence.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Wilson, D, Moated Sites, (1985), 9-10
English Heritage, Ashton Manor Listed Building Information, (1968)

Source: Historic England

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