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HER Number (PRN):01807
Name:Castle Hill, Ryton
Type of Record:Monument
Protected Status:Conservation Area: Ryton

Monument Types

Summary

The damaged remains of a medieval motte (earthwork castle, in this case probably the mound of a watchtower), the southern half of which was removed as recently as 1999 in order to backfill a swimming pool.

Parish:Ryton, Bridgnorth, Shropshire
Map Sheet:SJ70SE
Grid Reference:SJ 7601 0292

Related records: None recorded

Associated Finds

  • FSA240 - SHERD (12th century to 15th century - 1100 AD to 1499 AD)
  • FSA623 - VESSEL (Early 18th century to Late 19th century - 1700 AD to 1899 AD)

Associated Events

  • ESA2320 - 1959 excavation
  • ESA2321 - 1975 field observation by the Ordnance Survey
  • ESA5793 - 1999 site visit by English Heritage MPP Fieldworker

Description

A motte at Ryton is situated in the corner of a field, bounded on two sides by a steep drop down to the R Worfe <1a>
The bailey is well defined on the E side by a wide ditch, but on the S side it has been partly destroyed by the development of a C19 garden. Excavation in 1959 revealed a ditch around the mound approx 10ft 6ins deep and 12ft to 15ft wide at the top. Finds from the ditch section consisted of four medieval sherds and a quantity of C18 & C19 material. Field Name in 1841 was Castle Hill field. Motte 3m high and c35m diameter at base with a flat top c8m diameter on which is a large dead tree. Traces of ditch on SE side. The wide ditch on the E side probably refers to the natural gully or hollow way at SJ7607 0293. If there was a bailey it would have occupied the level area to the S of the motte. no remains could be positively identified but a short length of scarp slope may have defined part of its E side. OS FI 1975 <1>

Evaluated for MPP in 1990-1, Low score as one of 46 Motte and Bailey castles <3>

A motte 120m NW of Ryton Parish Church is situated immediately above the steep-sided meandering valley of the River Worfe. The flat-topped, steep-sided motte constructed of earth was originally circular, apx 35m in diameter at its base and 10m across the top. In relation to the sloping ground on which it stands, its height increases from 3m to 4.3m. The size of the mound indicates that it was only large enough to support a watchtower. With the exception of the steep ground to the north and north west a ditch was dug around the mound. This is no longer visible at ground level as an earthwork, but see below. A trench dug by JWG Snape through the eastern portion of the ditch in 1959 found that it was 3.7m - 4.6m wide at the top and apx 3.5m deep. Pottery dating from the 12th to the 15th century was found and there was evidence that the ditch had possibly been recut. In the early part of 1999 the southern portion of the motte was removed to infill a disused swimming pool at Ryton Grove. Almost half the mound has been severely damaged and the upper dark fills of the ditch have been exposed. ->

-> A published plan of the site by JWG Snape shows a possible bailey to the south and east of the motte. The supposed ditch defining the eastern side of the bailey noted by Snape is in fact a natural gulley. A low scarp running NW-SE, to the south of the ditch surrounding the mound, was considered by the Ordnance Survey field investigator as forming part of the defences of a possible bailey. The area to the south of this short low scarp is within the garden of Ryton Grove and has been landscaped. The disturbance of this area makes any further interpretation (whether or not a bailey was constructed) extremely difficult. <4>


<00> Shropshire County Council SMR, Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards, SMR Card for PRN SA 01807 (Card index). SSA20722.


<01a> Snape J W G, 1961/ 1964, Article in the Transactions of the Shropshire Archaeological and Historical Society, 191-193 (?or Vol 54, 1951-53) (Article in serial). SSA6309.


<01> Ordnance Survey, 1975, Ordnance Survey Record Card SJ70SE9 (Card index). SSA6310.


<02> Chitty Lily F, 1961/ 1967, Article in the Transactions of the Caradoc and Severn Valley Field Club, p56 (Article in serial). SSA403.


<03> Horton Wendy B, 1990/ 1991, MPP Evaluation File (TEXT). SSA20084.


<04> Reid Malcolm L, 2000-Feb-29, MPP Non-Scheduling Alternative Action Report [29/02/2000] (Alternative Action Report). SSA21994.

Sources

[00]SSA20722 - Card index: Shropshire County Council SMR. Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards. SMR record cards. SMR Card for PRN SA 01807.
[01a]SSA6309 - Article in serial: Snape J W G. 1961/ 1964. Article in the Transactions of the Shropshire Archaeological and Historical Society. Trans Shropshire Archaeol Hist Soc. Vol 57. 191-193 (?or Vol 54, 1951. 191-193 (?or Vol 54, 1951-53).
[01]SSA6310 - Card index: Ordnance Survey. 1975. Ordnance Survey Record Card SJ70SE9. Ordnance Survey record cards. SJ70SE9.
[02]SSA403 - Article in serial: Chitty Lily F. 1961/ 1967. Article in the Transactions of the Caradoc and Severn Valley Field Club. Trans Caradoc Severn Valley Fld Club. Vol 16. p56.
[03]SSA20084 - TEXT: Horton Wendy B. 1990/ 1991. MPP Evaluation File.
[04]SSA21994 - Alternative Action Report: Reid Malcolm L. 2000-Feb-29. MPP Non-Scheduling Alternative Action Report [29/02/2000].
Date Last Edited:Jan 11 2018 11:51AM