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Medieval moated site, Albury Farm, Merstham

A Scheduled Monument in Merstham, Surrey

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.259 / 51°15'32"N

Longitude: -0.1473 / 0°8'50"W

OS Eastings: 529374.757254

OS Northings: 152720.682419

OS Grid: TQ293527

Mapcode National: GBR JHW.5KK

Mapcode Global: VHGS4.DMH7

Entry Name: Medieval moated site, Albury Farm, Merstham

Scheduled Date: 13 April 1949

Last Amended: 2 May 1990

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015977

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12750

County: Surrey

Electoral Ward/Division: Merstham

Built-Up Area: Redhill

Traditional County: Surrey

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Surrey

Church of England Parish: South Merstham All Saints

Church of England Diocese: Southwark

Details

The monument at Albury Farm includes the inner and outer banks and
ditches of a medieval moated site together with the area enclosed by
the ditches on which buildings are considered likely to have stood.
Moated sites are generally seen as the prestigious residences of the
Lords of the manor, the moat marking the high status of the occupier
but also serving to deter casual raiders and wild animals. Most moated
sites were constructed in the period either side of 1300 AD, and
historical documents exist which confirm that the manor house of
Albury existed in the 13th or 14th century, at which time it was in
the hands of the de Passelle family.
The earthworks form an inner, square moat within which would have
stood the manor house itself, and three sides of an outer moat. The
fourth side of the outer moat was formed by the stream, now ducted
underground, which formerly flowed from north to south on the western
side and which filled both the inner and outer moat with water.
Earthen banks, some of impressive proportions, survive both around the
edge of the moat island and on the outer edge of the outer moat,
although they have been partially slighted at the south-east corner,
perhaps at the same time as the house of Albury Manor was demolished
around 1750.
The tarmac path leading across the southern side of the scheduled
area, the benches on the western side and the surrounding fencing are
all excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath the path
and benches remains included.

MAP EXTRACT
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 moated site at Albury Farm is of particular importance because it
is relatively wells documented. Having been largely undisturbed by
later building in the area the monument also survives well, and as a
result the archaeological potential of the site is high for the
recovery not only of evidence of the development of the buildings on
the moat island but also of the environment in which the monument was
sited.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Books and journals
Cantor, L, A Gazeteer of Medieval Deerparks, (1983)
Other
Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Moats, (1988)
Ketterington L, AM 12, (1980)
Surrey Antiquity 1052,

Source: Historic England

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