Ancient Monuments

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The Rookery, moated site, 350m west of Goddards Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Great Sampford, Essex

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Latitude: 51.9942 / 51°59'39"N

Longitude: 0.3663 / 0°21'58"E

OS Eastings: 562557.256368

OS Northings: 235510.354179

OS Grid: TL625355

Mapcode National: GBR NDS.X0X

Mapcode Global: VHJHV.94HJ

Entry Name: The Rookery, moated site, 350m west of Goddards Farm

Scheduled Date: 13 September 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011609

English Heritage Legacy ID: 20694

County: Essex

Civil Parish: Great Sampford

Traditional County: Essex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Essex


The monument known as the Rookery includes a moated site situated 350m west of
Goddards Farm, on a gentle north-eastern facing slope overlooking the River
Pant and 1.7km north-west of Great Sampford church. The sub-rectangular
moated area measures 90m NW-SE by 68m NE-SW. The north-eastern arm is partly
waterfilled and is 5.8m in width. The south-eastern arm is dry, 7m wide and
2m deep. The remaining two arms are represented by a ditch of maximum 2m in
width and 0.4m in depth. A causeway 2m wide on the south-east arm gives
access to the island, which is raised approximately 0.5m from the surrounding
ground level. The platform has been levelled to create a stepped bank
alongside the north-eastern arm, which rises in two stages from the ditch
bottom. At the northern angle of the moat is a waterlogged square fishpond
15m in length and 2.5m in depth. The moat is also known as 'The Mansion' but
was named 'Homestall' on the 1836 Tithe Map.

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 Rookery remains well-preserved and will retain archaeological information
relating to the occupation of the monument whilst the ditches will retain
environmental evidence pertaining to the economy of its inhabitants and the
landscape in which they lived.

Source: Historic England


SMR No: 1443, Information from SMR (No 1443),

Source: Historic England

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