Ancient Monuments

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Castle Hill motte and bailey, Halton

A Scheduled Monument in Halton-with-Aughton, Lancashire

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Latitude: 54.0768 / 54°4'36"N

Longitude: -2.7662 / 2°45'58"W

OS Eastings: 349966.226819

OS Northings: 464816.432183

OS Grid: SD499648

Mapcode National: GBR 9P39.XB

Mapcode Global: WH841.HS0H

Entry Name: Castle Hill motte and bailey, Halton

Scheduled Date: 25 January 1927

Last Amended: 12 February 1991

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012440

English Heritage Legacy ID: 13410

County: Lancashire

Civil Parish: Halton-with-Aughton

Built-Up Area: Halton

Traditional County: Lancashire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Lancashire

Church of England Parish: Halton St Wilfrid

Church of England Diocese: Blackburn


The monument at Castle Hill consists of a truncated motte situated at
the end of a promontory overlooking the River Lune. A concentric-shaped
bailey lies to the NE and is separated from the motte by a shallow
ditch. A rampart and ditch surround the bailey on the N, NW and NE side.
The earthworks are well defined at this monument. During the 2nd World
War a look-out post was built on top of the motte, the foundations of
which still survive. A flagpole has also been erected on the motte.
The flagpole and its concrete setting, and the foundations of the look-
out post are excluded from the scheduling, however, the ground beneath
them is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Motte castles are medieval fortifications introduced into Britain by the
Normans. They comprised a large conical mound of earth or rubble, the
motte, surmounted by a palisade and a stone or timber tower. In a
majority of examples an embanked enclosure containing additional
buildings, the bailey, adjoined the motte. Motte castles and motte-
and-bailey castles acted as garrison forts during offensive military
operations, as strongholds, and, in many cases, as aristocratic
residences and the centre of local or royal administration. Built in
towns, villages and open countryside, motte castles generally occupied
strategic positions dominating their Immediate locality and, as a
result, are the most visually impressive monuments of the early post-
conquest period surviving in the modern landscape. Over 600 motte
castles or motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally with
examples known from most regions. As such, and as one of a restricted
range of recognised early post-conquest monuments, they are particularly
important for the study of Norman Britain and the development of the
feudal system. Although many were occupied for only a short period of
time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to
the 13th centuries after which they were superseded by other types of
The motte and bailey castle at Halton is one of a series of such
monuments flanking the Lune valley and is thus of particular importance
in contributing to an understanding of the post-conquest land settlement
and development of the feudal system in the area. Its earthworks survive
well and the lack of subsequent occupation on the site, particularly in
the bailey, means that buried structural remains and environmental
evidence will survive well.

Source: Historic England


Capstick, B, AM 107 (25-2-1986), (1986)
Castle Hill Motte and Bailey, Halton, Leech, P, AM 107 (17-3-1982),
Leach, P.E., MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Motte & Bailey Castles, (1988)
Oct 1978, RCT, Castle Hill, (1978)
PRN 435, Lancs SMR, Castle Hill, Halton, (1984)

Source: Historic England

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