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Bundish Hall moated site

A Scheduled Monument in Moreton, Essex

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Latitude: 51.7288 / 51°43'43"N

Longitude: 0.2462 / 0°14'46"E

OS Eastings: 555222.783152

OS Northings: 205725.208702

OS Grid: TL552057

Mapcode National: GBR MGL.H24

Mapcode Global: VHHMH.7T03

Entry Name: Bundish Hall moated site

Scheduled Date: 7 July 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1017170

English Heritage Legacy ID: 33254

County: Essex

Civil Parish: Moreton

Traditional County: Essex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Essex

Church of England Parish: Chipping Ongar with Shelley

Church of England Diocese: Chelmsford


The monument includes a medieval moated site at Bundish Hall located on the
parish boundary separating Moreton from Ongar and 600m to the east of Cripsey
Brook, a subsidiary of the River Roding.

The moated site is roughly rectangular in plan, measuring a maximum of 96m
north west-south east by 76m north east-south west. A small projection of the
island, approximately 25m square, continues eastwards from the southern end of
the eastern side and is bounded by a continuation of the water-filled moat
which surrounds the entire site. The broad moat measures on average 12m in
width and at least 2m in depth, and is thought to be supplied by surface water
from the surrounding area. Bundish Hall, a 15th century structure, rebuilt in
the 17th century and later, occupies the northern quarter of the island, with
two 17th century barns and a granary standing nearby. These are all Grade II
Listed buildings and are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground
beneath them is included. Modern bridges cross the north east and south east
arms of the moat to provide access to the island, presumably (in the absence
of any causeway) replacing one or more earlier structures. Brick revetting is
visible on the southern corner of the island; the size and shape of the bricks
suggest they are Tudor in origin. A section of the southern moat arm,
immediately to the east of the bridge, has been enlarged to form a pond, 18m
in width, which is believed to have served as a watering place for horses; a
further spur extending 6m beyond the outer edge of the western arm of the moat
may have provided a watering place for cattle from the adjacent fields.

Bundish Manor, also known in the past as Brundish and Brendish Manor, is
believed to have taken its name from the family of John de Burndish from
Brundish in Suffolk. The Victoria County History states that from 1305 until
his death in 1336 John de Burndish held an interest in half of Moreton Manor
which was owned by John de Lenham. On the death of John de Burndish the half
manor reverted to Eleanor Gifford, heir to John Lenham. In 1338 John and
Eleanor Gifford conveyed 24 acres of land in Moreton to Nicholas de Burndish.
At his death in 1349 Nicholas also held another 60 acres in Moreton and 20
acres in Shelley, and it is believed that this land formed the centre of the
estate, later known as Bundish Manor. The 1777 Chapman and Andre map shows
Bundish Hall surrounded by the moat, and T Wright writing in 1831 recorded the
house and moat as `Brundish Hall' and stated that `anciently the two parishes
of Shelley and Moreton divided at the entrance end of the Great Hall'. The
moated site and layout of the buildings on the island has changed little from
the 1874 1st edition 25' Ordnance Survey map.

The main house, the 17th century barns, granary, bridges, all farm buildings,
walls and fences, and modern surfaces are excluded from the scheduling,
although 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.

Overall the moated site at Bundish Hall survives well. The island remains
largely undisturbed and will retain buried evidence for further structures, as
well as other features relating to the development and character of the site
throughout the periods of occupation. The buried silts in the base of the
ditches will contain both artefacts relating to the period of occupation and
environmental evidence for the appearance of the landscape in which the
monument was set.

The monument lies in an area where moated sites are relatively numerous, with
further moated sites situated 200m to the north at Cross Lees and 2km to the
north at Tanners Cottage, both in the parish of Moreton. Comparisons between
these sites and with further examples from other regions will provide valuable
insights into developments in the nature of settlement and many other aspects
of medieval society in England.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Doubleday, AH, Page, W, The Victoria History of the County of Essex, (1956), 133-134
Wright, T, History of Essex, (1832), 355-356
Grade II Listed 5/24, List of Buildings: Epping Forest, (1984)
Title: 1st Edition 25" Ordnance Survey Map
Source Date: 1874
Essex Record Office
Title: Map of the County of Essex
Source Date: 1777
Essex Record Office

Source: Historic England

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