Ancient Monuments

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Hall Garth motte and bailey castle, moated site and fishponds

A Scheduled Monument in Lockington, East Riding of Yorkshire

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Latitude: 53.9052 / 53°54'18"N

Longitude: -0.482 / 0°28'55"W

OS Eastings: 499823.371774

OS Northings: 446516.350718

OS Grid: SE998465

Mapcode National: GBR TR28.FV

Mapcode Global: WHGDX.K3NJ

Entry Name: Hall Garth motte and bailey castle, moated site and fishponds

Scheduled Date: 19 June 1946

Last Amended: 3 September 2004

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1021289

English Heritage Legacy ID: 35484

County: East Riding of Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Lockington

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): East Riding of Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Lockington St Mary

Church of England Diocese: York


The monument includes earthwork and The monument includes earthwork and
buried remains of a medieval motte and bailey castle, medieval moated site
and fishponds. It is located 500m south of the village of Lockington. The
monument lies to the west of the formerly extensive wetlands of the
Holderness Marshes which were drained as late as the 18th century and
converted to agricultural land. Little is currently known about the history
of the site. The motte and bailey castle is thought to have been built in
1120 by the Fossard family who had held the manor of Lockington since 1071.
As the seat of the manorial holding the castle would have functioned as the
administration centre for the manor.
The castle was probably abandoned in the late 13th to 14th centuries when in
common with other high status dwellings in the region, the domestic and
administrative functions of the manorial residence were transferred to a new
hall erected on a moated site located in the castle bailey to the east of the
motte. The moated site was in turn abandoned, probably by the 17th century
when the fashion for moated sites waned, and its functions relocated to the
current building known as Hall Garth, which dates to 1685. The motte has been
known as Coney Hills since at least the mid 19th century. The word coney is a
medieval term referring to rabbits or rabbit warrens, which indicates that
the motte was associated with rabbits although whether this was as a managed
warren or as a natural colony is currently unclear.
The motte and bailey castle at Lockington takes the classic form and includes
a flat-topped mound known as a motte encircled by a ditch with an enclosed
area known as a bailey located to the east. The motte survives as a
substantial sub-circular steep-sided mound measuring a maximum of 50m across
and standing up to 4m above the encircling ditch. On the western side there
is a substantial outer bank up to 20m wide and standing 2.5m high which
decreases in size to the east so that at the eastern side there is no outer
bank,allowing access to the bailey on this side. The ditch measures a maximum
of 6m wide. The area of the bailey lies immediately to the east of the motte,
however its original dimensions are unclear as the surviving remains have
been obscured by the later moated site constructed within the bailey.
The moated site includes an irregularly shaped platform centred on NGR
TA99894655 surrounded by a ditch on all but the western side. The platform
measures 50m north to south by a maximum of 40m east to west and the
surrounding ditch measures 0.7m deep and is up to 6m wide. At the south east
of the moated platform a pair of parallel linear ditches extend southwards.
The easternmost of these joins the ditch surrounding the moated platform and
is 40m in length and up to 4m in width. The western ditch extends southwards
as far as the field boundary and then curves to extend north eastwards for
some 60m. Both these ditches are interpreted as fishponds used for the
cultivation of fish and as designed garden features.
The moated site and motte lay within a wider enclosure or precinct in which a
range of ancillary functions associated with the wider agricultural and
economic functions of the manorial centre would have taken place. This is
enclosed by a raised bank measuring up to 4m wide and standing up to 1m high
which extends along the eastern, southern and western field boundaries
defining the monument. At the northern side it extends along the southern
side of the farm track as far as the complex of farm buildings. The line of
the precinct boundary would originally have extended further east and south
to complete the circuit, however the current farm complex has disturbed and
obscured remains in this area and consequently it is not included in the
monument. Within the north west corner of the precinct and to the west of the
motte there are a series of significant earthworks taking the form of linear
banks and rectangular platforms thought to be the buried remains of
boundaries and buildings within the precinct.
All fences and gates are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground
beneath these features is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Motte and bailey castles are medieval fortifications introduced into Britain
by the Normans. They comprised a large conical mound of earth or rubble, the
motte, surmounted by a palisade and a stone or timber tower. In a majority of
examples an embanked enclosure containing additional buildings, the bailey,
adjoined the motte. Motte castles and motte-and-bailey castles acted as
garrison forts during offensive military operations, as strongholds, and, in
many cases, as aristocratic residences and as centres of local or royal
administration. Built in towns, villages and open countryside, motte and
bailey castles generally occupied strategic positions dominating their
immediate locality and, as a result, are the most visually impressive
monuments of the early post-Conquest period surviving in the modern landscape.
Over 600 motte castles or motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally,
with examples known from most regions. As one of a restricted range of
recognised early post-Conquest monuments, they are particularly important for
the study of Norman Britain and the development of the feudal system. Although
many were occupied for only a short period of time, motte castles continued to
be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they
were superseded by other types of castle.

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.

Manorial centres were important foci of medieval rural life, closely
regulating local agricultural and village life. The manorial centre
itself comprised a series of buildings which, in general, included a hall
and associated domestic buildings, kitchen, staff lodgings as well as a
wide range of ancillary structures associated with agricultural and
economic functions. These included stables, barns and brewhouses,
workshops and dovecotes. Manorial centres also functioned as agricultural
units one common element of which was the fishpond. These are
artificially created pools of slow moving freshwater constructed to
cultivate, breed and store fish as a constant and sustainable supply of
food. Fishponds were maintained by a water management system which
included inlet and outlet channels carrying water from a river or stream,
a series of sluices and an overflow leat to prevent flooding.

Hall Garth motte and bailey castle, moated site and fishponds at
Lockington survive well in an area where such monuments are rare. Taken
as a whole the monument will add greatly to our understanding of the
development over time of a manorial complex and its social and economic
status in a a wider medieval, rural landscape.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Yorkshire: Volume II, (1912), 33
The Victoria History of the County of Yorkshire: Volume II, (1912)
Harris, A, 'Yorkshire Archaeological Journal' in The Rabbit Warrens of East Yorkshire in the 18th and 19th Cent, , Vol. Vol 42, (1968), 429-444
CUC BAF 91-93, (1989)

Source: Historic England

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