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Wattisham Hall

In the civil parish of Wattisham.
In the historic county of Suffolk.
Modern Authority of Suffolk.
1974 county of Suffolk.
Medieval County of Suffolk.

OS Map Grid Reference: TM01045129
Latitude 52.12349° Longitude 0.93549°

Wattisham Hall has been described as a probable Fortified Manor House.

There are earthwork remains.

This is a Grade 2 listed building protected by law*.

Description

VCH record of a 'moated enclosure with stronger defensive works (Class G)'. Wattisham Hall, 5 miles south-west from Needham Market, has a double moat. A broad oval fosse 44 ft. wide surrounds an area 9 ft. above the water, upon which stands the manor house. This is evidently an ancient fortified site long antedating the mediaeval works. A manorial moat was at some later period cut around a large irregular quadrangular area, inclosing the more ancient oval site. This averages 1 2 ft. wide, with banks 3 ft. high, and taking an inward curve on the south-east it enters the fosse of the first work; it is probable that at the time the moat was constructed the oval fosse was converted into a moat by the inlet of water. The church and churchyard are situated within the north-west corner of the manorial moat. Vestiges of banks without the western side may have inclosed an orchard, and by the north side of this embankment are the remains of a fish-pond. (VCH)

An oval waterfilled homestead moat, measuring overall c90.0m NE-SW by c80.0m transversely, enclosing Wattisham Hall (a farmhouse, modern in external appearance and not outstanding). The moat is 12.0m wide. The alleged outer moat is a series of drainage ditches and ponds. (PastScape–ref. Field Investigators Comments-F1 NKB 10-MAR-72)
Comments

Next to parish church. This is clearly more than a homestead moat. Manorial centre and oval form of moat does suggest an early date. Whilst the outer 'moat' is not a defensive feature it may well be more than just drainage ditches and it probably acted as a boundary marker. The parish church is within this larger enclosure.
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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*The listed building may not be the actual medieval building, but a building on the site of, or incorporating fragments of, the described site.
This record last updated before 1 February 2016

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