Ancient Monuments

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Medieval moated site and associated building platform 620m and 700m south east of Bannisdale Low Bridge

A Scheduled Monument in Whitwell and Selside, Cumbria

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Latitude: 54.3996 / 54°23'58"N

Longitude: -2.6989 / 2°41'56"W

OS Eastings: 354721.556605

OS Northings: 500682.548307

OS Grid: NY547006

Mapcode National: GBR 9KLK.HM

Mapcode Global: WH82J.JP02

Entry Name: Medieval moated site and associated building platform 620m and 700m south east of Bannisdale Low Bridge

Scheduled Date: 17 November 1972

Last Amended: 3 September 2004

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1021247

English Heritage Legacy ID: 35028

County: Cumbria

Civil Parish: Whitwell and Selside

Traditional County: Westmorland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Selside St Thomas

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


The monument, which is divided into two separate areas of protection,
includes the earthworks and buried remains of a medieval moated site and
an associated building platform. The moated site is located on the flood
plain of Bannisdale Beck immediately south of the beck 620m south east of
Bannisdale Low Bridge, and includes a dry moat which surrounds an island
or platform. A building platform containing the remains of a stone
building lies to the south east of the moated site.

The rectangular moated island measures approximately 38m by 36m and is
surrounded by a dry moat on all sides except the north east side which
lies immediately adjacent to the beck. Upcast from the ditch forms an
inner bank on three sides of the island; this bank measures up to 2.5m
wide and 0.5m high on the north west and south east sides of the island
but is substantially smaller on the south west side. The ditch measures up
to 6.5m wide. There is a single outer bank on the moat's south east side
and a double outer bank on the north west side. Entrance to the island is
gained at the northern corner while at the western corner there are traces
of a possible causeway suggesting a second entrance. Internally there are
faint traces of the surface remains of structural foundations
predominantly on the north eastern side of the island. A short distance to
the south east of the moat, at NY54790164, there is a building platform
measuring approximately 19m north-south by 10m east-west which contains
the boulder foundations of a two-roomed structure located on a low
elevated position above the flood plain of the beck.

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 medieval moated site 620m south east of Bannisdale Low Bridge survives
well and remains undisturbed by modern development. It is a well-preserved
example of this class of monument which is unusual in possessing an
adjacent associated building platform indicating structural features
extending beyond the moated island.

Source: Historic England


SMR No. 1941, Cumbria SMR, Moated Site 700m SE of Bannisdale Low Bridge, (1997)

Source: Historic England

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