Ancient Monuments

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Moated manorial site 200m north-west of East Field Copse

A Scheduled Monument in Brimpton, West Berkshire

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Latitude: 51.3836 / 51°23'1"N

Longitude: -1.2176 / 1°13'3"W

OS Eastings: 454542.384035

OS Northings: 165245.438889

OS Grid: SU545652

Mapcode National: GBR 93M.4ZP

Mapcode Global: VHCZL.VH44

Entry Name: Moated manorial site 200m north-west of East Field Copse

Scheduled Date: 6 December 1979

Last Amended: 29 March 1990

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013188

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12035

County: West Berkshire

Civil Parish: Brimpton

Traditional County: Berkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Berkshire

Church of England Parish: Brimpton

Church of England Diocese: Oxford


The monument includes a large moated site 200m north-west of East Field Copse.
The site is rectangular, aligned east-west and has maximum external dimensions
of 250m by 200m defined on all but the southern side by an outer bank and on
all sides by a ditch. The bank now appears more substantial to the east and
west where it survives to a maximum width of 30m. The earthworks to the east
are considered to represent a stream course modified to form a line of
fishponds. In the centre of the enclosed area is a building platform of c.30m
square. An entrance in the north-east corner of the site joins a hollow way
which leads east and south along the side of the eastern moat. Wall
foundations can be seen in the eastern and western ditches when the water
level is low. The site was probably abandoned in 1542.

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

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, relatively few survive in
Berkshire. This example is of particular importance as it survives well and
has a wide range of features. Archaeological documentation has demonstrated a
concentration of brick/tile within the area of the site.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Barfield, S, Thatcham, Berkshire and its manors, (1902), 47, 96
Dennison, E and Darvill, T, HBMC Monument Class Description - Moats, 1988,

Source: Historic England

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