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HER Number (PRN):01171
Name:Bromfield moated grange
Type of Record:Monument
Protected Status:Scheduled Monument 1009553: Bromfield moated grange

Monument Type(s):


Scheduled Monument: A medieval moated site which is believed to have been a grange, or farm, belonging to the nearby Benedictine Priory at Bromfield.

Parish:Bromfield, South Shropshire, Shropshire
Map Sheet:SO47NE
Grid Reference:SO 4789 7684

Related records

31374Parent of: Possible garden features, adjacent to Bromfield Grange (Monument)
03058Part of: Bromfield Priory, later Foxes House (Monument)
31376Related to: Possible earthwork remains of moated site, adjacent to Bromfield Grange (Monument)

Associated Finds: None recorded

Associated Events

  • ESA1573 - 1953 field observation by English Heritage
  • ESA1574 - 1973 field observation by the Ordnance Survey
  • ESA1575 - 1980 field observation by Shropshire County Council
  • ESA1576 - 1981 field observation by English Heritage
  • ESA7414 - 2014 Geophysical and topographical survey at Bromfield by University of Exeter
  • ESA9220 - 2016 Heritage impact assessment, Kingshead Farm, Bromfield, Shropshire (Ref: 16/01438/FUL)


Stone foundations seen in 1928 on the north bank of the island [<1a>] .. No stone now visible on the north bank of the island which is overgrown <1>

Moated site, situated .. on a flat level terrace between the junction of the Rivers Onny and Teme, to the SW. The land slopes southward towards the R Teme and also falls away to the W. The moat is square in shape with sides 70m long, and arms 10-12m wide. The ditch is 1.5m deep and the island is raised 0.5m above the external ground level. The arms of the moat are wet and marshy. Half way along the W edge of the island is a stepped section 5m long which appears to be stone revetted. There has been some tipping of rubbish at the N end of the W arm of the moat. A stream flows to the NW corner of the moat which may have originally fed the moat. In the field immediately adjacent to the E are various earth banks-possibly old field boundaries <6>

Evaluated for MPP in 1990-1: Medium score as one of 133 Moated sites <9>

Scheduling affirmed in 1993. Scheduling description: ->

-> The moated grange at Bromfield is located on the south-western side of the village. The monument has a moat island which is 50m square and about one metre higher than the land around the site. The island is surrounded by a ditch 2m to 3m deep and 4m wide. The ditch is partially water-filled and is fed by springs located at the south-eastern and south-western corners of the moat. Remains of a stone building are exposed on the north side of the island where a low stone wall, 0.5m high and 2.5m long with a small buttress, can be seen. A raised platform, on the northern side of the moat island and immediately south of the exposed stonework, indicates the position of former buildings. Disturbed stonework on the northern outer bank can also be seen and may be the site of an access point to the interior of the site. The moat lies 250m to the west of the church of the former Benedictine Priory at Bromfield which was associated with St Peter's Abbey at Gloucester. The Priory is documented from the 12th century to the Dissolution in 1537. It is considered that the moated site was the location of a homestead farm or grange associated with the Priory. ->

-> Bromfield moated grange is associated with a nearby well known priory site. The moat is well preserved and will retain archaeological evidence of the grange buildings in its interior. <10>

Earthwork survey was carried out on and around this site in 2014, as part of a project exploring the archaeology of the 12th century anarchy. Documentary sources had identified a possible castle site at Bromfield. Leland, writing in the 16th century, was clearly aware of a tradition telling of a castle at Bromfield, and identified it as the moated site now known as Bromfield Grange. Leland’s association is almost certainly mistaken, but the possibility that the moated site was developed on an earlier elite residence cannot be wholly dismissed. ->

-> The earliest historic maps for the Bromfield area consists of an undated estate map, believed to have been produced at some point in the early eighteenth century. This depicts the moated site of Bromfield Grange as tree covered and with water in the ditch. The moat lies within a field labelled ‘Crul Meadow and Calves Close’. ->

-> The earthwork survey identified features in the interior of the moated site, which is raised above the normal ground level: a raised area in the south-west quadrant, a section of bank on the northern edge, and a possible long bank parallel to the eastern arm of moat. Additionally there was a circular ditch and an area of apparent modern disturbance in the northeast corner. ->

-> An area of denuded earthworks were surveyed to the E of this moated site, and interpreted as the remains of a formal garden related to the moated site (PRN 31374). Immediately adjacent to the moated site, a spoil heap precluded survey in this area. However, analysis of LiDAR imagery (reproduced in report) in this area identified a square enclosure; this feature was only partially identified by the measured earthwork survey as it was obscured by the spoil heap. The feature consists of a slightly raised bank forming a square enclosure with a break in the earthwork in the south-eastern corner (see PRN 31376). ->

-> The form of the feature is consistent with a medieval moated site, interpreted as indicating a double moated site. Identification of two moated sites in close proximity as at Bromfield is sometimes interpreted as evidence of two phases of occupation, with a smaller antecessor site succeeded by a more extensive and elaborate example. More often, however, it appears that both moated enclosures were utilised contemporaneously with one site occupied by a residence and the other used for other buildings, gardens or orchards. The double moated enclosures at Bromfield most probably fit into this pattern of usage, comprising an elite residence most likely occupied from the thirteenth or fourteenth centuries. The identification of the more prominent moated site as a monastic grange therefore appears erroneous, as it seems highly unlikely that such a high status monument would have been occupied and utilised by lay brethren for agricultural purposes. More probable is that the Bromfield moats together formed the private home of a wealthy lord and perhaps patron of the monastery, or perhaps more likely still it represents the former residence of the priors of Bromfield. <11>


[00]SSA20722 - Card index: Shropshire County Council SMR. Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards. SMR record cards. SMR Card for PRN SA 01171.
[01a]SSA4662 - Map annotation: Chitty Lily F. 1949. Map annotation by OS Correspondent. 1:10560?.
[01]SSA4663 - Card index: Ordnance Survey. 1976. Ordnance Survey Record Card SO47NE5. Ordnance Survey record cards. SO47NE5.
[02]SSA4667 - Field Monument Warden Report: Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission (HBMC). Scheduled Monument Report on SAM 14940.
[03]SSA17149 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 1982-Jun-30. CPAT 82/C/0038. Colour. 35mm.
[04]SSA17150 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 1988-Mar-04. CPAT 88/03/0015.
[05]SSA17151 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 1989-Feb-20. CPAT 89/MB/0035 to 0036 (2 photos). Black and White. Medium.
[06]SSA4668 - Field recording form: Watson Michael D. 1980. Site Visit Form. SMR site visit form.
[07]SSA4664 - Scheduled Monument notification: Department of the Environment (DoE). 1972. Map of Scheduled area, 1972.
[08]SSA4665 - Scheduled Monument notification: English Heritage. 1991. Map of Scheduled area, 1991.
[09]SSA20084 - TEXT: Horton Wendy B. 1990/ 1991. MPP Evaluation File.
[10]SSA4666 - Scheduled Monument notification: English Heritage. 1993. Scheduling Papers (Affirmation, 13/01/1993). 13680.
[11]SSA27732 - Field survey report: Wright D, Trick, S and Creighton, O. 2014. Bromfield, Shropshire: geophysical and topographical survey report. University of Exeter. Area A.
Date Last Edited:Jul 10 2023 10:27AM