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Park Hall moated site, well and enclosure

A Scheduled Monument in Mapperley, Derbyshire

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Latitude: 52.9828 / 52°58'58"N

Longitude: -1.369 / 1°22'8"W

OS Eastings: 442459.037007

OS Northings: 343013.997055

OS Grid: SK424430

Mapcode National: GBR 7FK.W53

Mapcode Global: WHDGN.Y975

Entry Name: Park Hall moated site, well and enclosure

Scheduled Date: 17 January 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011618

English Heritage Legacy ID: 23294

County: Derbyshire

Civil Parish: Mapperley

Traditional County: Derbyshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Derbyshire

Church of England Parish: Mapperley Holy Trinity

Church of England Diocese: Derby


The monument includes the moated site and well at Park Hall and the adjacent
enclosure which extends to the south-east. The moated site is currently
occupied by the stackyard of Park Hall Farm and its visible remains comprise a
platform measuring c.30m square and the water-filled east arm of the moat
which is now c.8m wide. Partial excavations carried out by the Ilkeston and
District Local History Society in 1968 and 1970 have demonstrated that the
north arm of the moat also survives as a buried feature and is c.7m wide by
c.2.1m deep. Although no excavation was carried out along the west side of the
stackyard, it is believed that the west arm of the moat will also survive as a
buried feature together with the south end of the east arm, which was still
visible in 1880 on a line with the north wing of the present day farm. The
layout of the moated site indicates that other buried features will survive
beneath the north wing of the modern farm and will include the remains of a
gate leading from the farm track, together with a wall or other boundary
feature and the remains of earlier buildings.
In 1967, the Ilkeston and District Local History Society carried out a partial
excavation on the east side of the moated platform, north of the well which is
c.3.6m deep and water-filled. The well itself proved too wet to excavate but
was examined and found to be lined with blocks of local sandstone, dressed to
create a smooth circular well-shaft with drains let in at intervals. The
lowest 0.3m of the well was unlined. Immediately to the north of the well was
a levelled area identified as the site of a modern tennis court and now
occupied by a farm building constructed on a concrete platform. To the east of
this was found evidence of four distinct occupation phases, beginning in the
13th century. The most recent was represented by a paved area dated by pottery
evidence to the first half of the 19th century. Below this were sherds of 18th
century brown and black glazed pottery overlying an earlier paved area which
itself overlay a turf layer containing 17th century yellow glazed pottery and
fragments of clay pipes. The turf layer was preceded by a cobbled surface
embedded into iron slag containing a fused sherd of 16th century Midland
Purple ware pottery. Other fragments of Midland Purple were found among the
cobbles, together with sherds of Cistercian ware pottery, fragments of red
earthenware roof tiles, pieces of amber-green window glass, fragments of table
glassware with folded edges, and two decorated lead weights. Beneath the iron
slag was a layer of rubble containing 15th century orange glazed and 13th or
14th century green glazed pottery sherds, together with pieces of 13th or 14th
century brown and green glazed roofing tiles. Foundations for a culvert and
the walls of a building were set on the rubble layer and consisted of
undressed local sandstone blocks, packed with clay and pieces of brown and
green glazed roof tile. The latter would have come from demolished medieval
buildings, whose remains will survive as buried features in unexcavated areas
of the moated site. The culvert and walls are believed to be 16th century as
some sections were built on iron slag.
Excavation continued into the water-filled east arm of the moat and revealed a
small section of its original inner edge. A line of post holes and stake holes
indicated the existence of a palisade, dated to the 13th century by a sherd of
green glazed pottery. Also found were the preserved remains of two oak stakes
with adze-sharpened ends. The excavation also revealed that the moat edge had
gradually eroded beyond the line of the palisade and that stone slabs had been
laid down subsequently, possibly to revet the bank. The filled in north arm of
the moat also contained well preserved organic remains including parts of a
leather boot, thatch and timbers from a building demolished in the 16th
century, and three oyster shells and two leather insoles datable to the later
Middle Ages by their position close to the bottom of the moat. A further
small-scale excavation was made through the perimeter bank of the enclosure
south-east of the moat, but the only datable remains were pot sherds
associated with 19th century land drains. The enclosure is roughly 40m square
and partly bounded by a bank and silted up outer ditch with an entrance at the
south-west corner. The remains of further buildings and structures relating to
the moated site will survive as buried features within this area of the
Park Hall is believed to be associated with Simon de Arderne, who received a
grant of the manor of Mapperley, with fair, market and free warren, in 1267.
He appears to have exceeded his rights as lord of the manor by holding a Court
Leet and, in c.1270, Park Hall was forcibly entered by Ralph de Crumwell of
nearby West Hallam, who had his men destroy the gallows and take away the
pillory. In 1276, de Arderne sold the manor to Thomas de Luthe but his name is
preserved in the name 'Simon Fields' given to the land west of Park Hall Lane.
Further documentary evidence includes a record of Robert Morton of 'Le Park
Halle, Mapperley' made in 1507, a mention of the house made in Chancery
proceedings in 1599, and a further record of Sir Anthony of Strelley who
'lived at the Hamlet of Park Hall in 1691'. The moated site was deserted but
apparently still identifiable in 1857. However, by 1905, when the Rev Charles
Kerry wrote a description of the site, it appears to have looked much as it
does today, with only the well and the east arm of the moat surviving as
visible features.
Excluded from the scheduling are the modern farm buildings, outbuildings and
other structures of Park Hall Farm, all boundary fencing and gates, and all
modern surfaces, but the ground beneath these features 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.

Although few of the remains at Park Hall survive as visible features, limited
excavation has demonstrated that the archaeological remains of buildings and
other features survive well, both on the platform and in the moat, and exhibit
good stratigraphy as they have remained relatively undisturbed since the site
went out of use. Unusually for this part of the country, the well and part of
the moat are water-filled and even the filled in areas of the latter have
demonstrated the survival of well preserved organic remains such as wood,
leather, bone, thatch and shell. It is a relatively well documented site and
the written record forms a useful corollary to the excavated evidence which
demonstrates the development of the site over 600 years. Equally well
preserved remains will survive throughout the rest of the moated site and
in the adjacent enclosure.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Wollaton Manuscripts
Bulmer, T, History Topography and Directory of Derbyshire, (1895)
Glover, , History and Gazetteer of Derbyshire, (1840)
Kerry, Reverend C, History and Legends of Smalley, (1905)
White, , Directory of the County of Derby, (1857)
'The Ilkeston Pioneer' in The Ilkeston Pioneer, (1905)
Palfreyman, A F, 'Bulletin of the Ilkeston & District Local History Society' in Report on Excavations at Park Hall Farm, Mapperley (Derbyshire), (1970)
Palfreyman, A F, 'Bulletin of the Ilkeston & District Local History Society' in Report on Excavations at Park Hall Farm, Mapperley (Derbyshire), (1970)

Source: Historic England

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