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CHER Number:01777
Type of record:Monument
Name:Booth's Hill, Ramsey Abbey

Summary

A small motte within a moat, probably built by Geoffrey de Mandeville for his own use when he took possession of the Abbey and quartered his soldiers there. The mound has been adapted as an ice-house in later years

Grid Reference:TL 292 848
Parish:Ramsey, Huntingdonshire, Cambridgeshire

Monument Type(s):

  • CASTLE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • ICEHOUSE (Modern - 1901 AD to 2050 AD)
  • MOAT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • DITCH (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • POND (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • FISHPOND (Medieval to 19th century - 1066 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status:

  • Scheduled Monument () 1004643: Booths Hill, Ramsey Abbey

Full description

1. On the S side of the enclosure (of Ramsey Abbey) is an earthwork of doubtful purpose, known as Booth's Hill. It consists of an 'island' of irregular oval shape, with a mound about 12ft high near the middle of it. This mound has been altered for the building of an ice house.

2. Within the moat surrounding Ramsey Abbey, and near its southern side, is a curious mound surrounded by a moat. The mound, which goes by the name of Booth's Hill, is not large, but it has been adapted as an ice house in recent years, so its present form cannot be guaranteed as original; it now rises some 16ft above the bottom of the moat, which is itself 4ft below the surrounding surface. It stands about the middle of the S side of the Inclosure, which is 310ft long by about 120ft wide. Within the Inclosure, eastwards of the mound, is a large pond, and there are also three other depressions, but some of these may be Mod. It is possible that this little castle was erected by Geoffrey de Mandeville for his own use when he took possession of the Abbey and quartered his soldiers there. He was killed in 1144, and his son removed the soldiers to Wood Walton.

4. An ice house of unknown date located within a 12th century motte.

5. Booth's Hill, ice house. DN Hall, Fenland Survey, RN 575, RAM S10

6. The ice-house has undergone restoration work

O1, A small motte within a moat probably built by Geoffrey de Mandeville for his own use when he took possession of the Abbey and quartered his soldiers there, c 1140 - 1144. The mound has been adapted as an ice house in recent years, so its present form cannot be guaranteed as original but the moats are genuine and the whole earthwork is interesting, particularly as it can be dated. Lying S of Ramsey Abbey, this small motte is heavily overgrown. so dimensions difficult to assess. The moat is approximately 5m at widest part, wet in some areas, but filled with dead wood and some rubbish. It encloses a mound approximately 3m - 4m high from ditch bottom, covered in ivy, brambles and scrub, supporting some mature sycamore. There is a depression in centre. Entrance appears to be NW

O4, W part of site as recorded by R1 is now occupied by 29 Hollow Lane, The site has now been cleared of scrub and undergrowth and the ice house fitted with a door(Key with AFT, CCC Archaeology.)

O5, The "Hill" is constructed of spoil from adjacent fish ponds and the surface area at the summit is only large enough to hold a small building. The size, construction and topographical situation is not in keeping with a motte and bailey. These earthworks are probably the remains of a C17 / C18 gazebo mound and fishponds contemporary with the adjacent mansion. Published survey 25in revised.

Function: rebellion by de Mandeville
Finished? yes
Occupation: C12, quartering soldiers
Relationship to surrounding adjacent Ramsey Abbey settlements


Taylor, A., Castles of Cambridgeshire (Bibliographic reference). SCB19242.


<1> RCHM, 1926, An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Huntingdonshire, 208 - 209 (Bibliographic reference). SCB12619.


<2> Page, W. and Proby, G. (eds), 1926, The Victoria County History of Huntingdonshire. Volume 1, 291 - 292 (Bibliographic reference). SCB14952.


<2> Pevsner, N., 1968, The Buildings of England. Bedfordshire, Huntingdonshire and Peterborough, 335 (Bibliographic reference). SCB11224.


<4> Oxford Archaeological Unit, 1995, English Heritage Monuments Protection Programme Step 3 Report Site Evaluations For Ice Houses (Unpublished report). SCB21239.


<5> Hall, D.N., 1992, The Fenland Project, Number 6: The South-Western Cambridgeshire Fenlands (Bibliographic reference). SCB16698.


<6> Cambridgeshire Garden Trust, 2000, The Gardens of Cambridgeshire: A Gazeteer, 148 (Bibliographic reference). SCB21348.

Sources and further reading

---Bibliographic reference: Taylor, A.. Castles of Cambridgeshire.
<1>Bibliographic reference: RCHM. 1926. An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Huntingdonshire. 208 - 209.
<2>Bibliographic reference: Pevsner, N.. 1968. The Buildings of England. Bedfordshire, Huntingdonshire and Peterborough. 335.
<2>Bibliographic reference: Page, W. and Proby, G. (eds). 1926. The Victoria County History of Huntingdonshire. Volume 1. 291 - 292.
<4>Unpublished report: Oxford Archaeological Unit. 1995. English Heritage Monuments Protection Programme Step 3 Report Site Evaluations For Ice Houses.
<5>Bibliographic reference: Hall, D.N.. 1992. The Fenland Project, Number 6: The South-Western Cambridgeshire Fenlands.
<6>Bibliographic reference: Cambridgeshire Garden Trust. 2000. The Gardens of Cambridgeshire: A Gazeteer. 148.

Related records

11953Related to: Late Saxon and Medieval remains, Ramsey Abbey School (Monument)
02781Related to: Medieval abbey, Ramsey Abbey (Monument)
02781bRelated to: Post Medieval house and school, Ramsey Abbey (Building)
02782Related to: Ramsey Abbey Gatehouse (Building)
12329Related to: Ramsey Abbey park and gardens (Park and Garden)

Reports

Moat at Booth's Hill Ramsey Abbey © Cambridgshire County Council. Click to open in a new window.

Moat at Booth's Hill Ramsey Abbey © Cambridgshire County Council. Click to open in a new window.