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Moated site, Little Cokenach

A Scheduled Monument in Nuthampstead, Hertfordshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.9942 / 51°59'39"N

Longitude: 0.0538 / 0°3'13"E

OS Eastings: 541104.957392

OS Northings: 234853.406058

OS Grid: TL411348

Mapcode National: GBR L9Q.VVQ

Mapcode Global: VHHL6.W49K

Entry Name: Moated site, Little Cokenach

Scheduled Date: 30 January 1992

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011871

English Heritage Legacy ID: 17003

County: Hertfordshire

Civil Parish: Nuthampstead

Traditional County: Hertfordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Hertfordshire

Church of England Parish: Barkway

Church of England Diocese: St.Albans

Details

The moated site at Little Cokenach is roughly triangular in shape, and
occupies an isolated position 800m east of the village of Nuthampstead.
The maximum dimensions of the site are 70 x 60m. The ditches have an average
depth of 1.5m, and a width varying from 8m on the eastern side to 5m on the
south. There is an outer bank on the south western side. Although dry today,
the moat is known to have been water filled in the recent past. There is a
slightly raised area, approximately 30 x 18m, near the centre of the island,
which is identified as the site of the manor house. The original access point
across the ditch, represented by a slight causeway, is on the eastern side of
the island.
Most moated sites were constructed between 1250 and 1350 and it is to this
period that the example at Little Cokenach is likely to date. Historical
records show that the moat belonged to an estate given to the Abbey of
Montreuil-sur-mer in 1190.

MAP EXTRACT
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 moated site at Little Cokenach is a good surviving example of its kind,
well-documented and with important Norman French ecclesiastical connections.

Source: Historic England

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