Ancient Monuments

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Moated site at The Old Rectory, 150m north east of Malting Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Elmsett, Suffolk

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Latitude: 52.0804 / 52°4'49"N

Longitude: 0.9974 / 0°59'50"E

OS Eastings: 605484.397148

OS Northings: 246691.098034

OS Grid: TM054466

Mapcode National: GBR SKZ.F0V

Mapcode Global: VHKF2.7ZN0

Entry Name: Moated site at The Old Rectory, 150m north east of Malting Farm

Scheduled Date: 5 January 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019537

English Heritage Legacy ID: 33297

County: Suffolk

Civil Parish: Elmsett

Built-Up Area: Elmsett

Traditional County: Suffolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Suffolk

Church of England Parish: Elmsett

Church of England Diocese: St.Edmundsbury and Ipswich


The monument includes a medieval moated site at The Old Rectory, 650m to the
south west of Elmsett parish church and immediately to the west of Elmsett
The moated site includes a sub-triangular island measuring up to 116m north-
south by 74m east-west. The Old Rectory, which is situated on the east side of
the island, is a Listed Building Grade II and dates from the late 15th/16th
century. The island is contained by a water-filled moat, which measures up to
12m wide and 3m in depth. Access to the island is via a wide causeway across
the north arm of the moat and a footbridge across the south west part of the
The Old Rectory and associated outhouses, the summer house, the swimming pool,
all fences, gates and walls, brick steps, the footbridge across the moat and
the wooden jetty on the east side of the moat, and all modern surfaces are
excluded from the scheduling, 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.

The moated site at The Old Rectory, 150m north east of Malting Farm, survives
well. The greater part of the island remains largely undisturbed by modern
activity and will retain archaeological evidence for earlier structures, as
well as other features relating to the development and character of the site
throughout the periods of occupation.
Comparative studies between this site and further examples, both locally and
more widely, will provide valuable insights into the development of settlement
in medieval England.

Source: Historic England


39/338, The Old Rectory, Elmsett, (1995)
ETT 002, (1995)

Source: Historic England

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