Ancient Monuments

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Moated site 170m south west of Tyrell's Hall

A Scheduled Monument in Shepreth, Cambridgeshire

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Latitude: 52.1087 / 52°6'31"N

Longitude: 0.0341 / 0°2'2"E

OS Eastings: 539394.971349

OS Northings: 247547.352352

OS Grid: TL393475

Mapcode National: GBR L8B.PG6

Mapcode Global: VHHKM.J8W9

Entry Name: Moated site 170m south west of Tyrell's Hall

Scheduled Date: 3 July 2000

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019182

English Heritage Legacy ID: 33280

County: Cambridgeshire

Civil Parish: Shepreth

Built-Up Area: Shepreth

Traditional County: Cambridgeshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cambridgeshire

Church of England Parish: Shepreth All Saints

Church of England Diocese: Ely


The monument includes a medieval moated site located 170m south west of
Tyrell's Hall and 130m north east of Shepreth parish church. In 1764 the
moated enclosure was amongst the lands held by William Woodham, the owner of
the manors of Docwras and Tyrells. In the 11th century the manor of Tyrell's
was held by two separate estates and the moat may represent the site of one of

The moated site includes a roughly rectangular shaped island measuring up to
58m north west-south east by 50m north east-south west. The island is enclosed
by a water-filled moat which measures up to 13m wide and approximately
1m deep. The shallow causeway across the north west arm of the moat is thought
to represent the original access to the moat. A bridge across the south east
arm of the moat is thought to be modern.

The moat is now linked to a number of drainage channels, thought to be of
post-medieval date; only a small section of a leat on the north-eastern
corner, which is considered to be of medieval origin, is included in the

The bridges across the south east arm of the moat and the northern leat are
excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

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 170m south west of Tyrell's Hall survives well. The
island remains largely undisturbed and will retain buried evidence for
structures and other features relating to the period of occupation. The buried
silts in the base of the moat will contain both artefacts relating to
the period of occupation and environmental evidence for the appearance of the
landscape in which the moated site was set.

Comparison between this site and others, both locally and more widely, will
provide valuable insights into the nature of settlement and society in the
medieval period.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Cambridgeshire253-257
Title: Enclosure map of Shepreth
Source Date: 1811
CRO: Q/RD 210
Title: Plan of all enclosures belonging to William Woodham at Shepreth
Source Date: 1764
CRO: R53/4/160
Title: Tithe Map of Shepreth
Source Date: 1844
CRO: 296/P43

Source: Historic England

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