Ancient Monuments

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Moated site 285m east of Castlethorpe House

A Scheduled Monument in Scawby, North Lincolnshire

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Latitude: 53.5503 / 53°33'1"N

Longitude: -0.5069 / 0°30'24"W

OS Eastings: 499019.635571

OS Northings: 407001.409644

OS Grid: SE990070

Mapcode National: GBR SWXD.11

Mapcode Global: WHGGN.51W2

Entry Name: Moated site 285m east of Castlethorpe House

Scheduled Date: 29 April 1976

Last Amended: 16 April 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016429

English Heritage Legacy ID: 32625

County: North Lincolnshire

Civil Parish: Scawby

Built-Up Area: Brigg

Traditional County: Lincolnshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Lincolnshire

Church of England Parish: Broughton St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Lincoln


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of a medieval moated
site, together with associated earthwork remains of buildings and other
The Domesday Survey of 1086 listed Castlethorpe as a manor within the parish
of Broughton. It is thought that it developed as a hamlet controlling a
quayside on the River Ancholme to the east, with the main settlement lying
close to the modern Castlethorpe Hall, nearly 1km to the NNW of the moated
site. From at least 1115 until the early 15th century, the Painel family were
major land holders in Castlethorpe. Members of this family, who were major
benefactors to a number of religious houses, entertained the king's household
at Castlethorpe on at least two occasions, in 1267 and 1317. There is also a
1374 reference to Ralph Painel's manorial establishment at Castlethorpe.
The earthworks of the moated site and surrounding area were surveyed in 1979
by Boden and Miller and in 1988 the area was the subject of a geophysical
survey. In 1992, the Humberside Archaeology Unit conducted two sets of small
scale trial excavations investigating features to the north and east of the
main concentration of earthworks.
Towards the centre of the monument is the moated site. This includes an
approximately 50m square island surrounded by ditches up to 0.75m deep and 12m
wide. The ditch on the western side of the island is partly infilled by a
later field boundary and is now 9m wide. The enclosed island is slightly
higher than the surrounding land surface and includes slight earthwork
features, especially to the south west, interpreted as building remains. Just
across the moat ditch to the west of these features, there is a platform 35m
by 15m which forms the highest point within the monument. Further small raised
platforms, which are considered to have been sites of medieval buildings, lie
between the moated site and the road to the south of the monument. This area
is subdivided by breaks of slope, shallow ditches and low banks into
rectangular areas which are considered to have been small medieval garden
plots or yards. One of the ditches extends south from the south western corner
of the moated site and is thought to have been part of the moat's drainage
system. Two further ditches extend northwards from the two northern corners of
the moated site, the western ditch now largely infilled by a later field
boundary, but still detectable by geophysical surveying. To the west of the
moated site there is a right angled ditch 10m wide and 0.5m deep, considered
to define an additional enclosure for a fishpond which survives as a 20m by
10m depression towards its centre.
Later drainage ditches and field boundaries to the north and east are not
included in the scheduling. All fence posts are excluded from the scheduling,
although the ground beneath 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.

The moated site and associated earthworks at Castlethorpe will retain
important archaeological information about the medieval settlement and economy
of the Ancholme valley. The monument will include buried deposits, such as
those contained within infilled drainage ditches and rubbish pits, in
addition to structural remains of buildings. Evidence of water control
features, such as sluices, is also expected to survive.

Source: Historic England


Record cards, North Lincolnshire SMR, 726,
Watt, J , Archaeological Trial Excavations by Scawby Road, Brigg, (1992)

Source: Historic England

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