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Margaret's Camp, moated site and associated remains

A Scheduled Monument in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire

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Latitude: 51.9811 / 51°58'51"N

Longitude: -2.1544 / 2°9'15"W

OS Eastings: 389494.420578

OS Northings: 231413.886519

OS Grid: SO894314

Mapcode National: GBR 1JR.N5D

Mapcode Global: VH93T.LGYN

Entry Name: Margaret's Camp, moated site and associated remains

Scheduled Date: 23 June 1946

Last Amended: 7 July 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1018449

English Heritage Legacy ID: 31924

County: Gloucestershire

Civil Parish: Tewkesbury

Built-Up Area: Tewkesbury

Traditional County: Gloucestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Gloucestershire

Church of England Parish: Tewkesbury St Mary the Virgin (Tewkesbury Abbey)

Church of England Diocese: Gloucester


The monument known as Margaret's Camp includes a moated site with what
survives of an associated system of water management features, situated on the
southern outskirts of Tewkesbury. Part of the site, on its northern side, has
been affected by development and is not included in the scheduling.
The moated site is central to the monument and comprises a central square
platform measuring about 30m across surrounded by a moat, about 8m wide and
1.5m deep with no surviving evidence for an internal or external bank. The
north eastern corner of the moat has degraded over time and the ditch is not
as clearly visible as the rest of the enclosure. The land slopes away from the
moat to the south and south west, towards a pond, and an elaborate system of
channels appear to have drawn water from the moat to this pond. A ditch,
approximately 8m wide and 1.5m deep runs south from the moat, dog-legging to
the west to join a much deeper ditch which runs from the northern end of the
site into the pond. This second ditch is about 12m wide and up to 1.5m deep at
its southern extent, but only about 6m wide and between 1.5m and 0.5m deep
further to the north. The pond itself, which is at times water-filled is an
elongated `L'-shape and approximately 2m deep. Other water management features
in the form of shallow and degraded ditches are visible running across the
site, the most significant of which runs east to west at the northern end of
the field, disappearing under the modern road on the west and under the
housing estate on the east. This ditch is about 8m wide and 0.5m deep. There
is no evidence for similar earthworks to the south of the pond. The surviving
earthworks associated with the moated site suggest that the complex was
oringinally larger, stretching into the area of housing development to the
north and east.
The moated site is believed to take its name from the battle of 1471 when
Queen Margaret is said to have spent the night before the battle in the area.
Excluded from the scheduling are all modern fences, metal and wooden gates
and their associated gatepostsm, although the ground beneath these features is

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.

Margaret's Camp lies to the east of the main route into the important
medieval and post-medieval market town of Tewkesbury. The surrounding area has
been heavily developed for housing, and the moated site represents the only
open ground within this area. Evidence for a complex water management system
which survives in association with the moat, would have been necessary for the
Tewkesbury area where severe seasonal floods have been recorded from the
medieval period. Survival of waterlogged remains and other archaeological
evidence can be expected within the area of the monument.

Tewkesbury was the subject of an archaeological assessment by Gloucestershire
County Council in 1997. This provided information about the origins,
development and plan of the town from its origins in the Roman period to the
present day.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Elrington, CR et al, The Victoria History of the County of Gloucestershire: Tewkesbury Borough, (1968), 116

Source: Historic England

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