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Record Details

HER Number:00211/01
Type of record:Monument
Name:Moat Hall medieval moated site, Braithwell


Rectangular moated site, formerly a probably fortified manor house

Grid Reference:SK 534 943
Map Sheet:SK59SW
Parish:BRAITHWELL, Doncaster, South Yorkshire
Map:Show location on Streetmap

Monument Type(s):

Associated Finds:

  • None
  • Protected Status:

    • Scheduled Monument 1012461: Moat Hall moated site and external ancillary buildings

    Full Description

    <1> Moat Hall, Braithwell - Remains of 13th century and later Hall, surrounded by moat. 3 arches demolished 1939 and removed - 1 in garden of Mr. Bown of Maltby and 1in garden wall at Lambcote Grange. References: THAS Vol. 5 1938-43 p.233-6

    <2> Rectangular moated site, the island c.45 m. by c.28 m. The western and western half of the north arms still hold water. The southern arm is a slight depression, marshy at its west end. The eastern half of the north arm and the entire east arm have been completely filled since 1973 (the date of the O.S. survey) - prior to this there was a large pool at the north-east angle. The enclosed island surface slopes slightly down from north to south. Centrally placed on the island are the ruins of the Moat Hall, a 15th century building which can on good grounds be correlated with 'Le Priorie', a grange of Lewes Priory leased to John Vincent of Braithwell in 1427. The building appears to have consisted of a timber-framed first floor hall, with stone walls beneath. The first floor was demolished c.1930. The surviving ruins are mostly lower courses, in places reconstructed and 'tidied up', but with a good 15th century doorway arch standing intact. Associated buildings appear to have stood to the south, outside the area of the moat. A 'tithe barn' here was demolished early this century. The present house appears to have been a dovecote, and may incorporate medieval work.

    <3> Excavations alongside the driveway failed to identify the moat, but did identify stone structures in the same location as buildings on the 1854 map

    <4> The Moat Hall, Braithwell, now completely ruined, '... is surrounded by a moat still visible on three sides and in wet weather partially filled with water.' In the 16th c. the house was converted into a private residence. It was again converted into two cottages, in the 19th c. These were recently demolished.
    The remains {1942} include:- the 13th c. arch of the main entrance, in the S. wall; the remains of 16th c. window sills and mullions, in situ; a carved stone which was part of a traceried window. (Mr T Salvin (plan & illust.))
    An arcade of '... three arches of an earlier type than the main entrance. These arches were dismantled in 1939 and are now erected in the garden of Mr. H. Brown of Maltby.'

    Recent investigations, by various persons, have proved inconclusive. One suggestion is that the Moat Hall '... had once been used as a hospital for the Abbey of Roche ... ,' the west side being the dwelling-place and the east side used as a chapel. "Moat Cottage" near to the Holywell Lane was obviously once a dovecot and a large barn with pantiled roof occupies the eastern portion of the ground (Greene 1938-43).

    The remains of Moat Hall comprise portions of three exterior walls, and fragments of the fourth. Also included are the foundations of the lean-to scullery shown in the plan photographed on A0/59/199/7, and portions of internal walls.
    All walling is built of stone, roughly faced and coursed, and is 0.6m. thick. A portion of the south wall contains a two centred arch (referred to by Greene) and stands to a height of 3m. The remainder have been levelled to a uniform height of 1m. Set into the S wall adjoining the W side of the arch is the remains of the 16th c. mullion described by Greene, but no obvious remains of the tracery could be located. Much debris is scattered in and around the structure.
    The corner of the extension to the E as shown in A0/59/199/7 is not visible on the ground.

    Of the three arches ascribed to the possession of Mr Bown (not Brown) of Maltby, one remains erected in his garden. One other is reconstructed in the garden wall of Lambcote Grange.
    The moat is well defined on all but the south side. Here it is traceable as a shallow depression of average depth 0.8m. The average depth elsewhere is 1.3m. It is water filled in the western arm, and NE corner.
    Moat Cottage at SK 5343 9433 is a renovated, two gabled and two storeyed structure built of faced coursed rubble. Several large apertures in the north and east walls have been blocked. It appears lofty for the average cottage; but the impression gained is that it was constructed as a dwelling. Mr Sawyer is the present tenant.
    The barn at SK 5343 9434 is a roofless ruin. Only the north gable, and fragments of the east and west walls remain standing. These are built of roughly dressed and coursed stone, and are 0.6m thick.
    A 25" A.M. survey of the moat and ruin has been made (F2 RWE 29-JAN-60).
    Should be site of capital messuage called Le Priorie, leased in 1427 to John Vyncent of Braithwell by prior of Lewes. John was to rebuild 'a hall with a room at the west end 32 ft by 18 ft broad'. Prior retained right for monastic servants or himself to stay for three weeks in year if necessary. (Lewes had estates in vill). Priory kept two tithe barns, but two others as well as Kylnehouse, malthouse and stone well were to be leased with the property (Le Patourel 1973).
    Survey of ruined timber framed hall (CBA Group 4 Register 1980).
    SK 535 943. Moated site. A rectangular moated site of about 1.25 acres, the N and W sides more distinct than the S and E which have been filled in. The 'Moated Cottage' which stands on the site is reputed to be a converted dovecot, but it is very large for this. Much of the island is taken up with private lawns and gardens. On the N side of the moated platform there stand the foundations of a set of 16th century cottages demolished in the 1940's, but which were then found to incorporate portions of earlier buildings, including a 13th century archway still in situ. The foundations of these cottages (and the medieval masonry they may contain) still survive as a garden feature. There are distinct traces of other portions of this building-range underneath the garden lawn (Scheduling Report). (PastScape)

    <1> The Hunter Archaeological Society, 1938-43, Transactions of The Hunter Archaeological Society Volume 5, p. 233-6 (Serial). SSY1042.

    <2> PF Ryder, 1980, Report on Moat Hall, Braithwell (Unpublished document). SSY1569.

    <3> Wessex Archaeology, 2010, Moat Hall, Braithwell, Doncaster, Scheduled Monument No.13234: Archaeological Watching Brief (Grey Literature Report). SSY2245.

    <4> Gatehouse website (Web Resource). SSY3574.

    Sources and further reading

    <1>SSY1042 - Serial: The Hunter Archaeological Society. 1938-43. Transactions of The Hunter Archaeological Society Volume 5. p. 233-6.
    <2>SSY1569 - Unpublished document: PF Ryder. 1980. Report on Moat Hall, Braithwell.
    <3>SSY2245 - Grey Literature Report: Wessex Archaeology. 2010. Moat Hall, Braithwell, Doncaster, Scheduled Monument No.13234: Archaeological Watching Brief. Hartwell, M..
    <4>SSY3574 - Web Resource: Gatehouse website. www.gatehouse-gazetteer.info/home.html.

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