Information for record number MWA2342:
Whichford Castle Moat

Summary Whichford Castle Moat, a wide ditch surrounding a building, which dates to the Medieval period. It is probably of a later date than the inner building of which traces survive. It is visible as an earthwork, and is situated 200m west of the church at Whichford.
What Is It?  
Type: Moat
Period: Medieval (1066 AD - 1539 AD)
Where Is It?  
Parish: Whichford
District: Stratford on Avon, Warwickshire
Grid Reference: SP 30 34
(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: )
Scheduled Monument (Grade: )
Sites & Monuments Record
Picture(s) attached


Source Number  

1 Described as a 'Moat' on the OS map this represents a manor-house or castle probably built by Reginald Mohun, lord of the manor, 1204-13.
2 An approximate square enclosing an island of about 60.9m across or rather more. Traces of an internal building survive (PRN 5268). The Moat is now some 2.4 or 2.7m deep, and the bank on the outside is built up to give the necessary depth. Except for part of the W side it is now quite dry; there are several springs on the side of the hill, one of which seems to have been the means of supplying it with water. The earthworks suggest something more than an ordinary homestead Moat.
3 The rectangular Moat has a smaller rectangular projection on the N. The site occupies a strong natural position commanding a valley to the N. The ditch is about 4.6m wide and 3m deep from the top of the inner bank which is 0.6m to 0.9m high. At the E edge of the site the ground falls sharply away and a substantial bank has been thrown up to enable the Moat to hold water from a stream rising in the SW corner. There are traces of an entrance in the centre of the S side, and the stone revetment of a bridge connecting the two enclosures can be seen.
4 The Moat is at present used as a dump for old cars and a piggery.
5 Excavation in 1953 revealed a curtain wall of large ironstone blocks running along the inner edge of the ditch. This masonry is of a different type from that of the domestic buildings; this fact and the finding of pottery contemporary with that from the ruins of the buildings in the spoil-bank of the ditch may indicate that the ditch is later than the buildings that it surrounds.
9 In about 1968 the Moat was deepened and widened in order to hold fish.
10 The Moat and curtain wall were probably constructed in the late 13 century or early 14 century (i.e. after the buildings were erected), based on the fact that the material of the outer bank, which was obtained from the digging of the Moat, contains pottery from this, the main period of occupation. It seems that the original entrance to the site was probably on the south side, although at present, the only positive evidence for this is a causeway. Halfway along the N side a rectangular tower projects into the Moat; its function is as yet unknown, however.
11 Rescheduled as Monument No 21621 with a slightly amended schedule boundary in January 1998.

Source No: 8
Source Type: Aerial Photograph
Author/originator: J Pickering
Date: 1962
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: SP4489 C/D/E/X
Source No: 6
Source Type: Bibliographic reference
Title: Moated Sites Research Group
Author/originator: IRM
Date: 1984
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: Card
Source No: 1
Source Type: Bibliographic reference
Title: TBAS vol 63
Author/originator: Chatwin P B
Date: 1940
Page Number: 63-4
Volume/Sheet: 63
Source No: 9
Source Type: Correspondence
Title: Whichford Castle Moat
Date: 1971
Page Number:
Source No: 5
Source Type: Excavation Report
Title: Whichford Castle
Author/originator: Jones T L
Date: 1954
Page Number:
Source No: 4
Source Type: Record Card/Form
Title: OS Card 25NE6
Author/originator: Ordnance Survey
Date: 1968
Page Number:
Source No: 2
Source Type: Serial
Title: TBAS vol 67
Author/originator: Chatwin P B
Date: 1947
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 67
Source No: 11
Source Type: Scheduling record
Title: SAM County List
Author/originator: English Heritage
Date: 1998
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 21621
Source No: 7
Source Type: Scheduling record
Title: SAM list
Author/originator: DoE
Date: 1985
Page Number:
Source No: 3
Source Type: Scheduling record
Title: SAM list
Author/originator: DoE
Page Number:
Source No: 10
Source Type: Unpublished document
Title: Whichford Castle
Author/originator: Crutchley A
Date: 1997
Page Number:
Whichford Castle Moat
Copyright: Warwickshire County Council
Date: 1995
Click here for larger image  
The Castle Moat at Whichford
Copyright: Warwickshire County Council
Date: 1995
Click here for larger image  
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Word or Phrase
none Scheduled Monument Scheduled Ancient Monuments (SAMs) are those archaeological sites which are legally recognised as being of national importance. They can range in date from prehistoric times to the Cold War period. They can take many different forms, including disused buildings or sites surviving as earthworks or cropmarks.

SAMs are protected by law from unlicensed disturbance and metal detecting. Written consent from the Secretary of State must be obtained before any sort of work can begin, including archaeological work such as geophysical survey or archaeological excavation. There are nearly 200 SAMs in Warwickshire.
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 SAM List Scheduled Ancient Monument List. A list or schedule of archaelogical and historic monuments that are considered to be of national importance. The list contains a detailed description of each Scheduled Ancient Monument (SAM) and a map showing their location and extent. By being placed on the schedule, SAMs are protected by law from any unauthorised distrubance. The list has been compiled and is maintained by English Heritage. It is updated periodically. 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
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 HOUSE * A building for human habitation, especially a dwelling place. Use more specific type where known. back
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 STONE * Use only where stone is natural or where there is no indication of function. back
monument BOUNDARY * The limit to an area as defined on a map or by a marker of some form, eg. BOUNDARY WALL. Use specific type where known. back
monument TOWER * A tall building, either round, square or polygonal in plan, used for a variety of purposes, including defence, as a landmark, for the hanging of bells, industrial functions, etc. Use more specific type where known. back
monument CHURCH * A building used for public Christian worship. Use more specific type where known. 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 CASTLE * A fortress and dwelling, usually medieval in origin, and often consisting of a keep, curtain wall and towers etc. back
monument PIGGERY * A place where pigs are reared. back
monument BRIDGE * A structure of wood, stone, iron, brick or concrete, etc, with one or more intervals under it to span a river or other space. Use specific type where known. back
monument CAUSEWAY * A road or pathway raised above surrounding low, wet or uneven ground. back
monument ENCLOSURE * An area of land enclosed by a boundary ditch, bank, wall, palisade or other similar barrier. Use specific type where known. back
monument MANOR * An area of land consisting of the lord's demesne and of lands from whose holders he may exact certain fees, etc. 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 SQUARE * An open space or area, usually square in plan, in a town or city, enclosed by residential and/or commercial buildings, frequently containing a garden or laid out with trees. back
monument REVETMENT * A wall or masonry construction built for the purpose of retaining or supporting a bank of earth, wall, rampart etc. back
monument ISLAND * A piece of land, sometimes man-made, completely surrounded by water. back
monument SPRING * A point where water issues naturally from the rock or soil onto the ground or into a body of surface water. back
monument STREAM * A natural flow or current of water issuing from a source. back
monument CURTAIN WALL * A wall between two towers or pavilions, usually surrounding a building, and often forming a major part of the defences. back
monument HOMESTEAD * A small settlement, usually consisting of one dwelling with ancillary buildings. back
monument DOMESTIC * This is the top term for the class. See DOMESTIC Class List for narrow terms. 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