Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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New Hall Moat, Astley, 200m north of Astley Hospital

A Scheduled Monument in Astley Mosley Common, Wigan

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Latitude: 53.5059 / 53°30'21"N

Longitude: -2.4547 / 2°27'17"W

OS Eastings: 369936.774656

OS Northings: 401119.343655

OS Grid: SD699011

Mapcode National: GBR CW9W.CY

Mapcode Global: WH987.84BM

Entry Name: New Hall Moat, Astley, 200m north of Astley Hospital

Scheduled Date: 16 July 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014726

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27592

County: Wigan

Electoral Ward/Division: Astley Mosley Common

Built-Up Area: Tyldesley

Traditional County: Lancashire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater Manchester

Church of England Parish: Tyldesley St George

Church of England Diocese: Manchester


The monument includes a house platform surrounded by a moat. A modern house is
now located on the island on the site of the original medieval building. A
double garage has been erected on shallow foundations on the south side of the
The moat is complete in its circuit and measures between 20m and 30m wide,
with the widest part on the south west corner. At this point the water soaks
away to join a watercourse flowing westwards from the site. The moat has been
revetted with stone on the south side and this revetting is now in a ruinous
condition. The moat has been bridged on this south side, with a modern stone
bridge replacing an earlier timber structure across the water. The banks of
the moat have been drawn in at this point to form a narrow channel 1m wide and
culverted. The house platform enclosed by the moat is rectangular and measures
60m from south to north and 40m from east to west. The area enclosed is
0.25ha. This island is 0.4m above the surrounding land and has no trace of a
bank inside the moat. The house occupies approximately a third of the island.
The house and garage are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground
beneath them is included.

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 moat at New Hall is in relatively good condition in spite of the
replacement of the original house. The island will retain evidence of the
medieval buildings located there. The moat will retain silts containing the
remains of the refuse from the medieval occupation of the site and other
environmental evidence.

Source: Historic England

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