Ancient Monuments

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Moat Farm moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Aldingham, Cumbria

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Latitude: 54.1211 / 54°7'15"N

Longitude: -3.1059 / 3°6'21"W

OS Eastings: 327815.911306

OS Northings: 470036.179219

OS Grid: SD278700

Mapcode National: GBR 6NRS.CG

Mapcode Global: WH72K.8P81

Entry Name: Moat Farm moated site

Scheduled Date: 30 January 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013820

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27683

County: Cumbria

Civil Parish: Aldingham

Traditional County: Lancashire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Aldingham St Cuthbert

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


The monument includes Moat Farm medieval moated site. It is located close to
the sea shore a short distance north of Moat Hill (Aldingham motte and bailey
castle, the subject of a separate scheduling) which it superseded as home of
the Le Fleming family. It includes a rectangular island or platform surrounded
by a waterlogged moat. The island has been raised slightly above the level of
the surrounding land using the upcast from the digging of the moat, and
measures approximately 32m east-west by 28m north-south. The surrounding moat
measures c.13m-18m wide and 1.5m deep. The monument is thought to be the site
of the medieval manor house of Michael Le Fleming, Lord of Aldingham, prior to
the family's move to Gleaston Castle.
All fences and railings are excluded from the scheduling but the ground
beneath these features is included.

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.

Moat Farm moated site survives reasonably well and remains largely
unencumbered by modern development. It will retain evidence for the building
which originally occupied the island during the medieval centuries.
Additionally organic material will be preserved among the mud and silts of the
waterlogged moat. Its group relationship to the ringwork and motte at
Aldingham also contributes to its importance.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Farrer, J, Brownbill, W (eds), The Victoria History of the County of Lancashire: Volume II, (1908), 556-8
Darvill,T., MPP Single Monument Class Description - Moats, (1989)
SMR No.2337, Cumbria SMR, Moat Farm, Aldingham, (1986)

Source: Historic England

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