Ancient Monuments

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Moated site and an associated field system 240m south of Panson Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Great Hanwood, Shropshire

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Latitude: 52.679 / 52°40'44"N

Longitude: -2.8179 / 2°49'4"W

OS Eastings: 344797.623352

OS Northings: 309346.134305

OS Grid: SJ447093

Mapcode National: GBR BF.4BY3

Mapcode Global: WH8BS.PXBL

Entry Name: Moated site and an associated field system 240m south of Panson Farm

Scheduled Date: 20 June 1973

Last Amended: 9 February 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019205

English Heritage Legacy ID: 33808

County: Shropshire

Civil Parish: Great Hanwood

Built-Up Area: Hanwood

Traditional County: Shropshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Shropshire

Church of England Parish: Great Hanwood

Church of England Diocese: Hereford


The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a medieval moated
site and associated ridge and furrow cultivation situated in an area of gently
undulating land. There are three other moated sites in the vicinity. The one
north west of Whitley Grange, 550m to the north east, is the subject of a
separate scheduling.

The moat 240m south of Panson Farm is between 10m and 14m wide and defines a
subcircular island approximately 40m in diameter. The moat retains water,
apart from the south eastern quadrant which has been filled in during modern
times, but which will survive as a buried feature. Material excavated from the
moat has been used to raise the level of the island by about 1m above the
level of the surrounding ground. Spoil from this operation has also been used
to create an external bank, about 6m wide and up to 0.5m high, which surrounds
the western half of the moat. External ditches radiating from the south
western and north western parts of the site appear to have been dug in order
to drain the moat.

In the 15th century Panson is referred to as a manor, and in 1621 Thomas
Berrington of Moat Hall purchased a house here. In the early 19th century this
house was replaced by a group of cottages, which were demolished in 1964,
although the concrete and brick floors of these buildings remain. The water
supply for the cottages came from a well on the northern part of the island,
and it is likely that it also served the earlier houses that occupied the
site. Access to the site was via a raised causeway, which runs south eastwards
across the field and crosses the southern part of the moat. Overlying the
causeway is a well-laid cobbled pathway, of probable 19th century date. The
remains of strip cultivation known as ridge and furrow are visible beyond the
southern and eastern parts of the moat. A 20m sample area of these cultivation
remains, incorporating a section of the raised causeway and the cobbled path,
together with parts of the drainage ditches, has been included in the
scheduling in order to preserve the relationship between these features and
the moated site.

The brick and concrete floors of the demolished cottages 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 240m south of Panson Farm is a well-preserved example of this
class of monument. Subcircular moated sites are relatively uncommon nationally
and such sites are thought to date to the early medieval period. The moated
island will retain structural and artefactual evidence of the medieval and
later buildings that once stood on the site, which together with the artefacts
and organic remains existing in the moat will provide valuable evidence about
the occupation and social status of the inhabitants. Organic remains surviving
in the buried ground surfaces, under the raised interior and the external
bank, and within the moat, will also provide information about the changes to
the local environment and the use of the land before and after the moated site
was constructed. The ridge and furrow cultivation remains demonstrate the
nature of the agricultural practices in the area following the construction of
the moated site. Documentary sources also provide valuable information about
the later history of the site.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Shropshire : Volume VIII, (1968), 262-63
Forrest, H E , Some Old Shropshire Houses and their Owners, (1924), 184

Source: Historic England

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