Ancient Monuments

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Wardley moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Wardley and Leam Lane, Gateshead

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Latitude: 54.9505 / 54°57'1"N

Longitude: -1.5207 / 1°31'14"W

OS Eastings: 430798.280272

OS Northings: 561867.422298

OS Grid: NZ307618

Mapcode National: GBR KCT6.L5

Mapcode Global: WHC3S.MT2Q

Entry Name: Wardley moated site

Scheduled Date: 12 September 1986

Last Amended: 11 November 2015

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1017054

English Heritage Legacy ID: 32051

County: Gateshead

Electoral Ward/Division: Wardley and Leam Lane

Built-Up Area: Gateshead

Traditional County: Durham

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Tyne and Wear

Church of England Parish: Heworth St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Durham


Part of the moated medieval manor of Wardley and associated rig and furrow, held by Durham Priory and first documented in 1264. The site survives as a series of earthworks and buried deposits.

Source: Historic England


Principal elements: a medieval, manorial moated site with associated rig and furrow cultivation, surviving as a series of earthworks and buried deposits.

Description: the visible earthworks include the southern part of an enclosure, defined by a bank and a moat, surrounded by areas of ridge and furrow produced by medieval arable cultivation. The original western boundary of the moated site is visible in the west corner of the field immediately north of the farm. Here the moat has an internal and external bank, standing 0.5m high. The outer edge of the external bank is about 10m from the moat. The external bank can be seen on the south and east sides of the enclosure. The internal bank can be seen on the south side of the enclosure before it becomes obscured by accumulated 19th century refuse. On the east side and in parts of the south side of the enclosure the accumulated refuse stands 1m higher than the surrounding surface and infills the moat area. The remains of two fishponds, depicted on the first edition Ordnance Survey 1:2500 map, survive beneath further accumulated refuse. The moated site continues beneath the Bowes Railway comprising a section of the western and eastern arms of the moat and part of the island. The eastern arm of the moat continues north of the Bowes Railway visible as a deep and wide earthwork together with a section of the eastern part of the island immediately within the moat. The ditch and the section of island in this area measure about 22m across.

Extent of scheduling: the Bowes Railway is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it is included.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

The remains of Wardley medieval moated site and associated rig and furrow cultivation are scheduled for the following principal reasons:

* Rarity: although moated sites are widespread in England overall, they are rare in the north east;
* Association: Wardley is a significant example of a high status settlement associated with Durham Priory;
* Survival: the site is well-preserved with pronounced earthworks and is considered to have favourable conditions for the survival of significant organic deposits;
* Potential: the high status settlement will inform our understanding of medieval wealth, status and economy in the countryside in a region where sites of this nature are few.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Fordyce, W, History and Antiquities of the County Palatine of Durham, (1857), 748
Hodgson, J, 'in Enquiry Into The Ant. Of An Ancient Entrenchment, Called Wardley' in Archaeologia Aeliana, , Vol. 1, 1, (1822), 112-117
Earthwork Survey: Wardley Moated Site, Archaeological Practice, University of Newcastle 1996
The Archaeological Practice, Newcastle University: O'Brien, C/ 1994/Wardley Manor Moated Site

Source: Historic England

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