Ancient Monuments

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Alley's Lane moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Church Eaton, Staffordshire

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Latitude: 52.7568 / 52°45'24"N

Longitude: -2.2317 / 2°13'54"W

OS Eastings: 384459.951733

OS Northings: 317710.908907

OS Grid: SJ844177

Mapcode National: GBR 17C.0MJ

Mapcode Global: WHBDY.PYHY

Entry Name: Alley's Lane moated site

Scheduled Date: 9 November 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011062

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21527

County: Staffordshire

Civil Parish: Church Eaton

Traditional County: Staffordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Staffordshire

Church of England Parish: Church Eaton St Editha

Church of England Diocese: Lichfield


The monument includes a sub-rectangular moated site located 120m east of The
Woodlands in Wood Eaton.
The moat has been partly infilled but remains distinctly visible as a shallow
depression on the ground surface. It measures up to 9m wide and is now 0.4m
deep. The eastern arm of the moat includes a narrow causeway across the line
of the ditch. There are traces of external banks on the outer edges of all
four arms of the moat. The raised moated island measures 92m north-south and
38m west-east. The ground surface of the southern part of the island is
slightly lower than that to the north. This forms a subsidiary platform which
measures approximately 32m square. Ex situ sandstone blocks are evident in the
area of the moated site.
The manor of Church Eaton and the vill of Wood Eaton were closely linked and
Alley's Lane moated site may be associated with either or both. The manor
passed from Hamon de Longford via his daughter to Adam de Brinton in 1216 and
remained in that family until 1438. The site is considered to have been
infilled at the end of the 19th century using soil taken from the fishpond at
Brookhouse Farm, Wood Eaton.

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.

The monument west of Alley's Lane is a good example of a medieval moated site
and is unencumbered by modern development. Despite infilling, the ditches
will retain important deposits associated with the occupation and desertion
of the site and structural and artefactual evidence for the buildings here
will be retained on the moated island.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Staffordshire, (1958), 91-4

Source: Historic England

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