Ancient Monuments

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Knightley Dale moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Gnosall, Staffordshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.8106 / 52°48'38"N

Longitude: -2.2745 / 2°16'28"W

OS Eastings: 381594.401593

OS Northings: 323711.360063

OS Grid: SJ815237

Mapcode National: GBR 056.V2M

Mapcode Global: WHBDR.1M55

Entry Name: Knightley Dale moated site

Scheduled Date: 23 December 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011054

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21517

County: Staffordshire

Civil Parish: Gnosall

Traditional County: Staffordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Staffordshire

Church of England Parish: High Offley St Mary the Virgin

Church of England Diocese: Lichfield

Details

The monument includes a polygonal moated site situated at the north end of the
village of Knightley Dale. The moat is within a field known from tithe maps
as Moat Meadow and is considered to represent the site of the Knightley manor
house.
The moated island measures 70m north west-south east and 60m north east-south
west and is slightly raised. The south western and north eastern edges of the
island have internal banks which measure up to 6m wide and 0.5m high. There
are no standing buildings on the island but irregularities in the ground
surface indicate the position of buried features. The moat is flat-bottomed
and measures up to 15m wide and 1m deep. It is dry, except at the south
eastern arm of the moat where a small pond has formed. The moat is largely
infilled through natural silting but remains clearly visible. The outer edge
of the north eastern arm has been obscured by the construction of a road to
the east of the site which has damaged the edge of the moat. This area is not
included in the scheduling. There is a causeway across the north western edge
of the moat. The south western arm of the moat appears to extend southwards
slightly beyond the projected outer line of the moat.

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.

Knightley Dale moated site is a well preserved example. The moat island is
unexcavated and remains unencumbered by modern development. Evidence of the
building that originally occupied the island will exist beneath the ground
surface.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Books and journals
Burne, SAH, 'Transactions of the Old Staffordshire Society' in Vanished Chantry Chapels, (1949), 12
Hammer, M E, 'Staffordshire Archaeology' in The Moated Sites of Staffordshire, , Vol. 3, (1974), 34

Source: Historic England

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