Ancient Monuments

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Dodleston Hall moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Dodleston, Cheshire West and Chester

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Latitude: 53.1464 / 53°8'47"N

Longitude: -2.9564 / 2°57'22"W

OS Eastings: 336130.936971

OS Northings: 361460.880831

OS Grid: SJ361614

Mapcode National: GBR 77.5VR9

Mapcode Global: WH88L.K5FP

Entry Name: Dodleston Hall moated site

Scheduled Date: 29 November 1991

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011786

English Heritage Legacy ID: 13455

County: Cheshire West and Chester

Civil Parish: Dodleston

Built-Up Area: Dodleston

Traditional County: Cheshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cheshire

Church of England Parish: Dodleston St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Chester


The monument at Dodleston Hall comprises much of the extensive rectilinear
island of a moated site together with the surrounding dry moat and an outer
bank flanking the SW arm.
The monument is an unusually large example of its type with the grassy island
originally measuring c.150m x 110m and containing an area over 1.6 hectares.
Surrounding the island on three sides is a dry moat 7-10m wide x 1m max.
depth. Access to the interior was via a causeway across the moat's SE arm.
An inner bank c.6m wide x 0.2m high flanks the NE arm and an outer bank 12m
wide x 0.2m high flanks the SW arm.
During the 16th century Dodleston Hall was a timber structure occupying the
centre of the island. It was owned by Sir Thomas Egerton, later Lord
Chancellor. The hall was demolished c.1788 and a farmhouse erected on the
All field and property boundaries are excluded from the scheduling. A
telegraph pole on the island and a concrete inspection chamber in the SW arm
of the moat are also excluded from the scheduling 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.

Much of the moated site of Dodleston Hall survives well and is unencumbered by
modern development. The monument retains considerable archaeological
potential for the recovery of evidence of building foundations associated with
the earlier Dodleston Hall known to have occupied the centre of the island.
Additionally the unusually large size exhibited by this site illustrates well
the diversity in this class of monument.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Ormerod, G, 'History of Cheshire' in History of Cheshire, , Vol. 3, (1882)
3244, RAF, Sortie No. CPE/UK/1935, (1947)
Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Description - Moats, (1988)
Mr. T. G. Dodd (Site owner), To Robinson, K.D. MPPFW, (1990)
Ordnance Survey, Ordnance Survey Record Card SJ 36 SE 3, (1975)
SMR Record No. 1978/3, Dodleston Hall, (1989)
Williams, S R, Dodleston 2, (1977)

Source: Historic England

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