Ancient Monuments

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Moated site at Marlbrook Hall Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Meriden, Solihull

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Latitude: 52.4548 / 52°27'17"N

Longitude: -1.6119 / 1°36'42"W

OS Eastings: 426472.529765

OS Northings: 284169.155809

OS Grid: SP264841

Mapcode National: GBR 5K5.1B9

Mapcode Global: VHBWQ.0KQG

Entry Name: Moated site at Marlbrook Hall Farm

Scheduled Date: 16 January 1998

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1017531

English Heritage Legacy ID: 30010

County: Solihull

Civil Parish: Meriden

Traditional County: Warwickshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): West Midlands

Church of England Parish: Meriden St Laurence

Church of England Diocese: Coventry


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of the moated site of
Marlbrook Hall. The moated site is a compact sub-rectangular homestead moat
complete in circuit except for a breach across the southern angle created by
the building of the present farm buildings. The moated site is orientated
north west to south east and measures approximately 130m by 50m and covers an
area of about 1.24ha. The present 16th to 17th century farm house represents
the final phase of the farm outbuildings of the former hall and is timber
framed with brick noggin on a sandstone plinth. The farm house is a Grade II
Listed Building and is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground
beneath it is included.
The moat is substantially water-filled from the southern angle along the south
eastern and north eastern arms. The moat is dry from mid-way along the north
eastern arm around the northern angle and for the whole of the north western
arm. The remainder of the moat in the south western arm is water-filled, as
an isolated pond. The moat ditches are quite uniform measuring 6m to 10m
across the top of the banks, except in the southern angle where the moat
widens to approximately 15m across.
The interior of the moat island is undulating with earthworks representing
both former orchard remains and the site of Marlbrook Hall. To the exterior of
the south western arm of the moat, is evidence of a substantial exterior bank.
The fields to the north, west, and south of the moat all contain medieval
ridge and furrow cultivation remains. A 20m sample of this is included in the
scheduling in order to preserve the relationship between the moated site and
the medieval field system.
The moat appears to be spring fed but was augmented by surface drainage fed
from a leat in the south western corner. An over flow channel is located in
the eastern angle.
The farm house, all ancillary buildings, all garden furniture, the surface of
modern paths and garden walls, and the modern post and wire fences and wooden
gates which surround the moat, are excluded from the scheduling, although the
ground beneath all 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.

The moated site at Marlbrook Hall Farm is a well preserved example of a simple
homestead moat typical of many which used to be found in the area, its
survival within an associated field system with little evidence of recent
disturbance enhances its importance.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Salzman, LF (ed), The Victoria History of the County of Warwickshire: Volume IV, (1947), 150-1
1947 to present, Various county archaeologists and SMR officer, Notes in SMR file regarding the site,

Source: Historic England

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