Ancient Monuments

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Moated site at Mount Pleasant

A Scheduled Monument in Sedgehill and Semley, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.0493 / 51°2'57"N

Longitude: -2.2073 / 2°12'26"W

OS Eastings: 385567.134018

OS Northings: 127787.776469

OS Grid: ST855277

Mapcode National: GBR 1X3.0SY

Mapcode Global: FRA 668B.V6T

Entry Name: Moated site at Mount Pleasant

Scheduled Date: 25 July 1990

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013075

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12064

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Sedgehill and Semley

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Sedgehill St Catherine

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument includes a triangular moated site immediately to the west of
Mount Pleasant Cottages. The site survives as an earthwork enclosing the top
of a slight promontory but overlooked by higher ground to the south and west.
It has maximum external dimensions of c.130m north-south and 100m east-west.
The longest arm of the triangle faces east. The main feature of the site is a
ditch with maximum depth of 3.5m and an average width of between 9 and 11m.
There are remains of an inner bank on the north-west and north-east sides and
on the south-west is an outer bank with a maximum height of 0.2m and an
overall width of 8m. Though mainly dry the ditch has been wet on the south-
west side. The causeway approach in the south-west is believed to be
original. During the 1960s partial excavation of the western arm revealed
medieval pottery and much iron slag. In the centre a horse-shoe shaped mound
indicates the location of a building.

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 a large number of moated sites are known in England, relatively few
survive in Wiltshire. This example is particularly important as it survives
well with a good range of features. In addition partial excavation has
demonstrated good preservation of archaeological deposits.

Source: Historic England


Dennison, E and Darvill, T, HBMC Monument Class Description - Moats, 1988,
Shaftesbury and District Arch Soc, (1960)

Source: Historic England

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