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HER Number (PRN):01197
Name:Bicton Motte and Bailey Castle
Type of Record:Monument
Protected Status:Scheduled Monument 1019658: Bicton motte and bailey castle

Monument Types


Scheduled Monument: Despite some disturbance, this is a good example of a Norman motte (earthwork castle), which probably formed one of a pair controlling the valley traffic around Clun (the other being Clun Castle itself).

Parish:Clun, South Shropshire, Shropshire
Map Sheet:SO28SE
Grid Reference:SO 2893 8257

Related records: None recorded

Associated Finds: None recorded

Associated Events

  • ESA1661 - 1970 field observation by English Heritage
  • ESA1662 - 1973 field observation by the Ordnance Survey
  • ESA1663 - 1978 field observation by Shropshire County Council
  • ESA1664 - Undated field observation by English Heritage


Motte with ditch and outer bank cut from a natural glacial moraine. There is no trace of a bailey. The motte has been mutilated by gravel digging but had a base diameter of about 25m . Its present maximum height is 2.3m. The ditch and bank remain only on the SE side, elsewhere they have been dug away. The ditch is 10m wide and 2m deep, the bank is 8m wide and 1.2m externally. OS FI 1973. Considered to be an incomplete earthwork <1>

Evaluated for MPP in 1990-1, Low score as one of 46 Motte and Bailey Castles <10>

Scheduling revised in 2001. Scheduling description: ->

-> The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a motte and bailey castle to the south of the hamlet of Bicton. It has been constructed by adapting a low elongated glacial mound, on the eastern side of the flood plain of the River Unk. It is situated 1.9km upstream of Clun Castle located next to the River Clun, which is the subject of a separate scheduling. The close proximity of these two castles suggest that they acted together during the early Middle Ages to control river crossing points and the movement of people along the valleys. ->

-> The oval shaped motte appears to have been originally circular, approximately 30m in diameter at its base. It has been modified by later quarrying for gravel and now stands to a height of 2.2m. A dry flat-bottomed ditch surrounds the motte, which is defined by an external bank and a small bailey -to the south. The south eastern part of the bank is about 8m wide and also stands about 2.2m high. The rest of the bank is now visible as a slight earthwork, having been reduced in height by later quarrying and the digging of drainage ditches. The southern part of the glacial mound appears to have been deliberately altered to form a small bailey, a level rectangular platform measuring approximately 14m by 25m. A former field boundary has cut into the base of the scarp which defines the western side of this platform <11>

Record of management issues and reccommendation made in c.1996 <12>

Photographed during aerial survey in 2009. <13>

<00> Shropshire County Council SMR, Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards, SMR Card for PRN SA 01197 (Card index). SSA20722.

<01a> Victoria County History, 1908, Victoria County History 1, p385 (Volume). SSA178.

<01b> Hogg A H A & King D J C, 1963, Early Castles in Wales and the Marches, p96 (Article in serial). SSA1163.

<01> Ordnance Survey, 1973, Ordnance Survey Record Card SO28SE23 (Card index). SSA4846.

<02> Musson Chris R, 1983-Jul-20, CPAT 83/03/0023 (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA17207.

<03> Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission (HBMC), 1986, Scheduled Monument Report on SAM 26551 (Field Monument Warden Report). SSA4848.

<04> Bird A J, 1977, History on the Ground, p110 (Monograph). SSA475.

<05> Tyler Alan W, 1978-Oct-18, Visit Notes, 18/10/1978 (Site visit report). SSA4849.

<06> Tyler Alan W, 1978-Oct, Bicton Motte & Bailey, Clun (Photograph). SSA12874.

<07> Musson Chris R, 1985-Jul-23, CPAT 85/16/0023 (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA17208.

<08> Clwyd Powys Archaeological Trust, 1985, Oblique View of Bicton Castle, 1985 (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA17209.

<09> Department of the Environment (DoE), 1971, Map of Scheduled area, 1971 (Scheduled Monument notification). SSA4847.

<10> Horton Wendy B, 1990/ 1991, MPP Evaluation File, Motte and Bailey Castles (TEXT). SSA20084.

<11> English Heritage, 2001, Scheduling Papers (Revised Scheduling, 09/03/2001) (Scheduled Monument notification). SSA20348.

<12> Leigh Judith, 1996, The Clun environmentally sensitive area: management plans for Scheduled Ancient Monuments (Management report). SSA23415.

<13> Shropshire Council, 2009-Jan-6, SA0901_192 to SA0901_196 (5 photos) Flight: 09_SA_01 (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA25874.


[00]SSA20722 - Card index: Shropshire County Council SMR. Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards. SMR record cards. SMR Card for PRN SA 01197.
[01b]SSA1163 - Article in serial: Hogg A H A & King D J C. 1963. Early Castles in Wales and the Marches. Archaeologia Cambrensis. Vol 112. p77-124. p96.
[01a]SSA178 - Volume: Victoria County History. 1908. Victoria County History 1. Victoria County History of Shropshire. Vol 1. p385.
[01]SSA4846 - Card index: Ordnance Survey. 1973. Ordnance Survey Record Card SO28SE23 . Ordnance Survey record cards. SO28SE23 .
[02]SSA17207 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 1983-Jul-20. CPAT 83/03/0023.
[03]SSA4848 - Field Monument Warden Report: Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission (HBMC). 1986. Scheduled Monument Report on SAM 26551.
[04]SSA475 - Monograph: Bird A J. 1977. History on the Ground. p110.
[05]SSA4849 - Site visit report: Tyler Alan W. 1978-Oct-18. Visit Notes, 18/10/1978.
[06]SSA12874 - Photograph: Tyler Alan W. 1978-Oct. Bicton Motte & Bailey, Clun. Black and white. 35mm.
[07]SSA17208 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 1985-Jul-23. CPAT 85/16/0023.
[08]SSA17209 - Oblique aerial photograph: Clwyd Powys Archaeological Trust. 1985. Oblique View of Bicton Castle, 1985. Colour.
[09]SSA4847 - Scheduled Monument notification: Department of the Environment (DoE). 1971. Map of Scheduled area, 1971.
[10]SSA20084 - TEXT: Horton Wendy B. 1990/ 1991. MPP Evaluation File. Motte and Bailey Castles.
[11]SSA20348 - Scheduled Monument notification: English Heritage. 2001. Scheduling Papers (Revised Scheduling, 09/03/2001). 33834.
[12]SSA23415 - Management report: Leigh Judith. 1996. The Clun environmentally sensitive area: management plans for Scheduled Ancient Monuments. English Heritage.
[13]SSA25874 - Oblique aerial photograph: Shropshire Council. 2009-Jan-6. SA0901_192 to SA0901_196 (5 photos) Flight: 09_SA_01. Colour. Digital.
Date Last Edited:Oct 20 2015 8:38AM