Information for record number MWA1651:
Site of Sudeley Castle Moat

Summary The site of Sudeley Castle Moat, a wide ditch usually surrounding a building. The Moat dated to the Medieval period and was situated 300m north east of Griff Lane.
What Is It?  
Type: Moat
Period: Medieval (1066 AD - 1539 AD)
Where Is It?  
Parish: Nuneaton and Bedworth
District: Nuneaton and Bedworth, Warwickshire
Grid Reference: SP 35 89
(Data represented on this map shows the current selected record as a single point, this is for illustrative purposes only and does not represent an accurate or complete representation of archaeological sites or features)
Level of Protection National - Old SMR PrefRef (Grade: )
Sites & Monuments Record
Picture(s) attached


Source Number  

1 Sudeley Castle has the remains of a fairly large moat; there is a little water in one corner, but generally it is only a shallow depression. It was the manor house of the Sudeleys; evidently it was a place of some importance but, apparently, not known as a Castle till comparatively recently.
2 There are no visible remains of the manor house to be seen within the enclosed area of the moat, which is of normal homestead type, though in rather poor condition.
4 Excavation indicates a 13th/14th century date and revealed the manor house. The name 'Castle' is a misnomer. The surrounding moat is not formidable. The N ditch was visible, but had been obscured by ploughing and the W part had been completely levelled. The moat is rhomboidal, some 51.8m wide on the E side. The N and S measured 73.1m and 65.8m respectively. No evidence for an internal bank was found and the interior was not raised above the surrounding land. Two sections were cut across the moat on the W and N sides. The moat was shallow, flat bottomed, and with gently sloping sides, approx 8.8m wide. It was 1.8m deep on the W and 0.9m deep on the N. The W section appears to have been deliberately obliterated through the dumping of coal from a local pit.
6 The site has been descheduled.
7 The E part of the moat was destroyed in 1974, when a dual carriageway was constructed over the site. At this time the W part of the site was under plough and the earthworks had been reduced to slight undulations. The W area was destroyed in Jan/Feb 1986 by open cast mining. A watching brief produced no new evidence for the date of the moat, or for internal features. Only a thin strip of the centre of the site now survives.
8 Archival material from 1966.
9 Record card notes find of coins.

Source No: 7
Source Type: Bibliographic reference
Title: Moated Sites Research Group
Author/originator: IRM, JEC, RCH
Date: 1986
Page Number: 14
Volume/Sheet: 13
Source No: 6
Source Type: Correspondence
Title: Sudeley Castle Moat
Author/originator: Webb H, EH
Date: 1985
Page Number:
Source No: 4
Source Type: Excavation Report
Title: Griff Manor House (Sudeley Castle)
Author/originator: West S, Journal of the British Archaeological Association
Date: 1968
Page Number: 76-101
Volume/Sheet: 31
Source No: 8
Source Type: Record Card/Form
Title: Sudeley Castle, Griff
Date: 1966
Page Number:
Source No: 9
Source Type: Record Card/Form
Title: Sudeley Castle
Page Number:
Source No: 2
Source Type: Record Card/Form
Title: OS Card 29NE1
Author/originator: Ordnance Survey
Date: 1967
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 29NE1
Source No: 3
Source Type: Serial
Title: WMANS no 9 1966
Author/originator: West S
Date: 1966
Page Number: 11
Volume/Sheet: 9
Source No: 1
Source Type: Serial
Title: TBAS vol 67
Author/originator: Chatwin P B
Date: 1947
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 67
Source No: 5
Source Type: Scheduling record
Title: Site of Sudeley Castle, Griff
Author/originator: DoE
Page Number:
A Medieval moat on the 1887 Ordnance Survey map near Griff, Bedworth
Copyright: Open
Date: 1887
Click here for larger image  
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Word or Phrase
source OS Card Ordnance Survey Record Card. Before the 1970s the Ordnance Survey (OS) were responsible for recording archaeological monuments during mapping exercises. This helped the Ordnance Survey to decide which monuments to publish on maps. During these exercises the details of the monuments were written down on record cards. Copies of some of the cards are kept at the Warwickshire Sites and Monuments Record. The responsibility for recording archaeological monuments later passed to the Royal Commission on Ancient and Historic Monuments. back
source TBAS Transactions of the Birmingham and Warwickshire Archaeological Society is a journal produced by the society annually. It contains articles about archaeological field work that has taken place in Birmingham and Warwickshire in previous years. Copies of the journal are kept by the Warwickshire Sites and Monuments Record. back
source WMANS West Midlands Archaeological News Sheet, a publication that was produced each year, this later became West Midlands Archaeology. The West Midlands Arcaheological News Sheet contains reports about archaeological work that was carried out in the West Midlands region in the previous year. It includes information about sites dating from the Prehistoric to the Post Medieval periods. It was produced the Department of Extramural Studies at Birmingham University. Copies are held at the Warwickshire Sites and Monuments Record. back
technique Earthwork Earthworks can take the form of banks, ditches and mounds. They are usually created for a specific purpose. A bank, for example, might be the remains of a boundary between two or more fields. Some earthworks may be all that remains of a collapsed building, for example, the grassed-over remains of building foundations.

In the winter, when the sun is lower in the sky than during the other seasons, earthworks have larger shadows. From the air, archaeologists are able to see the patterns of the earthworks more easily. Earthworks can sometimes be confusing when viewed at ground level, but from above, the general plan is much clearer.

Archaeologists often carry out an aerial survey or an earthwork survey to help them understand the lumps and bumps they can see on the ground.
technique excavation Archaeologists excavate sites so that they can find information and recover archaeological materials before they are destroyed by erosion, construction or changes in land-use.

Depending on how complicated and widespread the archaeological deposits are, excavation can be done by hand or with heavy machinery. Archaeologists may excavate a site in a number of ways; either by open area excavation, by digging a test pit or a trial trench.
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period Medieval 1066 AD to 1539 AD (the 11th century AD to the 16th century AD)

The medieval period comes after the Saxon period and before the post medieval period.

The Medieval period begins in 1066 AD.
This was the year that the Normans, led by William the Conqueror (1066 – 1087), invaded England and defeated Harold Godwinson at the Battle of Hastings in East Sussex.
The Medieval period includes the first half of the Tudor period (1485 – 1603 AD), when the Tudor family reigned in England and eventually in Scotland too.

The end of the Medieval period is marked by Henry VIII’s (1509 – 1547) order for the Dissolution of the Monasteries in the years running up to 1539 AD. The whole of this period is sometimes called the Middle Ages.
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monument SITE * Unclassifiable site with minimal information. Specify site type wherever possible. back
monument BUILDING * A structure with a roof to provide shelter from the weather for occupants or contents. Use specific type where known. back
monument MANOR HOUSE * The principal house of a manor or village. back
monument FEATURE * Areas of indeterminate function. back
monument MOAT * A wide ditch surrounding a building, usually filled with water. Use for moated sites, not defensive moats. Use with relevant site type where known, eg. MANOR HOUSE, GARDEN, etc. back
monument CARRIAGEWAY * The part of a road intended for vehicular traffic. back
monument CASTLE * A fortress and dwelling, usually medieval in origin, and often consisting of a keep, curtain wall and towers etc. back
monument PIT * A hole or cavity in the ground, either natural or the result of excavation. Use more specific type where known. back
monument DITCH * A long and narrow hollow or trench dug in the ground, often used to carry water though it may be dry for much of the year. back
monument HOMESTEAD * A small settlement, usually consisting of one dwelling with ancillary buildings. back
monument EARTHWORK * A bank or mound of earth used as a rampart or fortification. back

* Copyright of English Heritage (1999)

English Heritage National Monuments Record