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HER Number (PRN):01015
Name:Soulton Hall Moat
Type of Record:Monument
Protected Status:Scheduled Monument 1017236: Soulton moated site

Monument Types


Scheduled Monument: An unusual and well-preserved example of a circular medieval moated site (believed to represent the manor site for the Domesday manor of Soulton), which has been incorporated into the 17th century formal gardens of Soulton Hall, the old house's successor.

Parish:Wem Rural, North Shropshire, Shropshire
Map Sheet:SJ53SW
Grid Reference:SJ 5454 3031

Related records

08247Related to: Formal garden remains at Soulton Hall (Monument)

Associated Finds: None recorded

Associated Events

  • ESA1003 - 1968 field observation by the Ordnance Survey
  • ESA1004 - 1981 field observation by Shropshire County Council


Near the existing Soulton Hall (SA 12406) on the opposite side of the road by a brook is a rectangular moated area, the site of the older house occupied in the C13 <1a-c>
One of the compilers of the OS record card interpreted the site as a ringwork on the basis of an OS 1965 vertical AP <1>

Well preserved small rectangular moat sited on gently E sloping ground on the W bank of Soulton Brook. There is no E side to the moat...the flooded brook may well have formed this E arm. The S arm has been partly destroyed by the modern road (built on its outer scarp)...The N and W arms are intact and average 1.7m deep and up to 10m wide. At the S end of the W arm is the remains of a causewayed entrance c 3m wide... The very small island measures c35m x 30m and is raised 1m above the surrounding ground level, it also has a stepped profile. At its NW and its SW end corners are what appear to be small rectangular raised building platforms between which runs a linear holloway in alignment with the causeway. This may represent the original entrance flanked by ? gatetowers. Abutting onto the N arm outer edge is a rectangular area enclosed by its scarp on its N and E sides and a shallow ditch on the W which runs into the moats N arm. Just to the west of this running from the NW corner of the moat is a wide shallow linear depression which is wet and marshy and which may be a possible feeder leat. A similar but much shorter ditch runs into the W arm The scarp defined rectangular area is probably an external enclosure. M Watson FI 1981 <2>

Evaluated for MPP in 1990-1, High score as one of 133 Moated sites <6>

Scheduled with the formal gardens across the road in 2000. Relevant parts of Scheduling description: ->

-> The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a medieval moated site and a post-medieval formal garden within two separate areas of protection. ->

-> The moated site is considered to be the centre of the manor of Soulton. In the Domesday survey the manor was recorded as belonging to St Michael's Chapel in Shrewsbury Castle. Records dating to the second half of the 13th century indicate that by that time the manor was being leased to Robert Corbet. In the 16th century it had been bought by Sir Rowland Hill, which probably led to the building of a new residence, known as Soulton Hall, 200m to the south west of the moated site. This house was sizably enlarged in the third quarter of the 17th century and is partly surrounded by a walled garden. The hall and the 17th century garden walls are Listed Grade II* and are not included in the scheduling. ->

-> The moated site is situated on the western edge of the flood plain of Soulton Brook, at the base of a gentle east facing slope. An oval shaped moat, well preserved to the north and west (averaging 18m wide), but less evident around the rest of its circuit, surrounds a rectangular island. The island is an unusual construction, displaying a well defined stepped profile on all sides, which is believed to be the result of of its later use as part of the post-medieval formal garden. The lower step averages 1.2m in height and the upper step is about 0.8m high. The upper portion raises the height of the moated island above the level of the surrounding ground to the west. The top of the island measures approximately 18m east-west by 22m north-south. On the top there are a series of slight scarps, which relate to the building or buildings that once occupied the site. Crossing the western moat arm are the slight remains of a causeway. ->

-> A number of features are excluded from the scheduling, these are: all modern field boundaries, fences and gates, the water trough and fodder container, the pump house and a disused section of water pipe, (above ground and encased in brick and concrete); the ground beneath all these features is, however, included in the scheduling. <7>

Photographed during aerial survey in 2009. <8>

Briefly described for a student dissertation, looking at the moated sites of North Shropshire. <9>

A rectangular castle mound…the S arm of the ditch was destroyed by roadworks. Probably built by predecessors of Ivo de Suleton (d.c.1310). <10>

<00> Shropshire County Council SMR, Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards, SMR Card for PRN SA 01015 (Card index). SSA20722.

<01c> Anon, 1904, Transactions of the Shropshire Archaeological Society, pxix (Volume). SSA2916.

<01a> Anon, 1920/ 1926, Transactions of the Caradoc & Severn Valley Field Club, p67-70 (Volume). SSA3676.

<01b> Woodward I, 1952, The Story of Wem and its Neighbourhood, p125-126 (Monograph). SSA3671.

<01> Ordnance Survey, 1973, Ordnance Survey Record Card SJ53SW9 (Card index). SSA3677.

<02> Watson Michael D, 1981-Feb-05, Site Visit Form, 05/02/1981 (Field recording form). SSA3679.

<03> Musson Chris R, 1983-Mar-20, CPAT 83/S/0039 (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA16950.

<04> Roberts M, 1990, Roberts M, Oblique View, 1990: 90/02/20 (Photographic medium) (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA16951.

<05> Watson Michael D, 1981, Soulton Hall Moat (Photograph). SSA3678.

<06> Horton Wendy B, 1990/ 1991, MPP Evaluation File (TEXT). SSA20084.

<07> English Heritage, 2000, Scheduling Papers (New Scheduling, 07/07/2000) (Scheduled Monument notification). SSA21275.

<08> Shropshire Council, 2009-Apr-5, SA0908_227 to SA0908_231 (5 photos) Flight: 09_SA_08 (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA25741.

<09> Cashmore A M, 1980, Medieval moated sites of North Shropshire (Manuscript). SSA29428.

<10> Jackson M, 1985, A gazetteer of Medieval castles in England. Part 33- Shropshire, p.42 (Gazetteer). SSA29943.


[00]SSA20722 - Card index: Shropshire County Council SMR. Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards. SMR record cards. SMR Card for PRN SA 01015.
[01c]SSA2916 - Volume: Anon. 1904. Transactions of the Shropshire Archaeological Society. Transactions Shropshire Archaeol Hist Soc. Ser 3 Vol IV (=Vol 27). pxix.
[01b]SSA3671 - Monograph: Woodward I. 1952. The Story of Wem and its Neighbourhood. p125-126.
[01a]SSA3676 - Volume: Anon. 1920/ 1926. Transactions of the Caradoc & Severn Valley Field Club. Trans Caradoc Severn Valley Fld Club. Vol 7. p67-70.
[01]SSA3677 - Card index: Ordnance Survey. 1973. Ordnance Survey Record Card SJ53SW9. Ordnance Survey record cards. SJ53SW9.
[02]SSA3679 - Field recording form: Watson Michael D. 1981-Feb-05. Site Visit Form, 05/02/1981. SMR site visit form.
[03]SSA16950 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 1983-Mar-20. CPAT 83/S/0039.
[04]SSA16951 - Oblique aerial photograph: Roberts M. 1990. Roberts M, Oblique View, 1990: 90/02/20 (Photographic medium).
[05]SSA3678 - Photograph: Watson Michael D. 1981. Soulton Hall Moat. Colour.
[06]SSA20084 - TEXT: Horton Wendy B. 1990/ 1991. MPP Evaluation File.
[07]SSA21275 - Scheduled Monument notification: English Heritage. 2000. Scheduling Papers (New Scheduling, 07/07/2000). 32307.
[08]SSA25741 - Oblique aerial photograph: Shropshire Council. 2009-Apr-5. SA0908_227 to SA0908_231 (5 photos) Flight: 09_SA_08. Colour. Digital.
[09]SSA29428 - Manuscript: Cashmore A M. 1980. Medieval moated sites of North Shropshire.
[10]SSA29943 - Gazetteer: Jackson M. 1985. A gazetteer of Medieval castles in England. Part 33- Shropshire. p.42.
Date Last Edited:Mar 19 2018 3:57PM