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Moated site and fishpond, 200m south-west of Hilderstone Hall

A Scheduled Monument in Hilderstone, Staffordshire

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Latitude: 52.9096 / 52°54'34"N

Longitude: -2.0669 / 2°4'0"W

OS Eastings: 395594.76608

OS Northings: 334689.796118

OS Grid: SJ955346

Mapcode National: GBR 26Z.D8R

Mapcode Global: WHBDG.7407

Entry Name: Moated site and fishpond, 200m south-west of Hilderstone Hall

Scheduled Date: 18 January 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011066

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21533

County: Staffordshire

Civil Parish: Hilderstone

Traditional County: Staffordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Staffordshire

Church of England Parish: Hilderstone Christ Church

Church of England Diocese: Lichfield


The monument is situated approximately 200m south-west of Hilderstone Hall
near the village of Hilderstone and includes a moated site and an associated
All features on the site are aligned on a NW-SE axis, the fishpond lying to
the south-east of the moated site. The moated site has external dimensions of
approximately 100m square. The dry moat is approximately 12m wide and is up to
4m deep. The south-western arm of the moat is now 1m deep and appears to have
been partly backfilled. External banks are visible on the north-western and
south-western edges of the moat. The outer banks are 2m wide and 0.5m high.
The moated island measures 58m square and projects out of a natural hillslope.
There are traces of an internal enclosure bank on all sides and slight
earthworks in the central part of the island, indicating the existence of
buried features. There is no surface evidence of the original access onto the
island. At the northern and eastern corners of the moated site are the remains
of drainage channels. These would originally have provided the water supply
for the moat. A slight break in the outer bank at the southern corner of the
moat represents the remains of the outlet channel from the moat.
The fishpond is situated immediately to the south-east of the moated site. The
outer edge of the moat, on its south-eastern side, rises to form a retaining
bank for the pond. The slight bank continues beyond the southern corner of the
moated site and curves southward to form a retaining bank at the south-western
edge of the fishpond. The pond, which is water-filled, is silting up at its
north-eastern edge.
The present Hilderstone Hall, 200m north-east of the moated site, outside the
area of the scheduling, was built in 1730, but records concerning a house on
the moated site date back to the 13th century.
The fence posts on the monument, the small boat-house and the modern brick
retaining wall which is situated at the south-western edge of the fishpond are
excluded from the scheduling, but the ground beneath these features is

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 south-west of Hilderstone Hall is a good example of a moated
site and associated fishpond. The moated site displays a range of
characteristics associated with this class of monument, including good
evidence for buried features and an inner bank to the island. The ditches
which have silted naturally will retain evidence for the environment and
economy of the inhabitants.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Hammer, M E, 'Staffordshire Archaeology' in The Moated Sites of Staffordshire, , Vol. 3, (1974), 38

Source: Historic England

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