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Kentchurch Tump

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Bowlston Court Wood; Bowlstone Court Wood

In the civil parish of Kentchurch.
In the historic county of Herefordshire.
Modern Authority of Herefordshire.
1974 county of Hereford and Worcester.
Medieval County of Herefordshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SO42162700
Latitude 51.93849° Longitude -2.84275°

Kentchurch Tump has been described as a probable Timber Castle.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


Earthwork and buried remains of a medieval motte castle, situated on a small promontory near the head of the south east facing valley of a tributary of the River Monnow. The remains include an earthen motte mound, oval in plan, with steep sides that rise to a roughly level summit measuring c.40m north-south by 25m east-west. Material for the construction of the mound will have been obtained from the ditch which surrounds it on all but the south west side, where the ground drops steeply to the brook. The ditch averages 5m wide, and is most clearly visible on the north side, where it survives up to 2m deep. Access to the motte appears to have been via a causeway across the ditch in the north east quarter. South of this the ditch is less distinct, and diverts westwards from its circuit to enclose a detached earthen mound roughly 15m north west-south east by 6m transversely. The shallow ditch continues round the south side of this second mound and past the south end of the motte, making the south east corner of the ditch somewhat angular. The summit of the motte is c.4m above the base of the ditch, and is also obscured by vegetation. However, three platforms were recorded in 1931, and these will represent the remains of the structures which occupied the motte. The motte 280m south of New Buildings Farm sits in a line between two similar mottes, at Howton Farm some 2.5km to the NNW (the subject of a separate scheduling, SM 27522), and at Corras 2km to the south. Two further monuments at the mouth of the valley, a medieval moated site (SM27540) and Kentchurch Court, which has 14th century origins, place the monument in a sequence of lordly occupation, which culminated in the post-medieval development of Kentchurch Court. (Scheduling Report)

Probable enclosed (possibly moated) homestead scheduled as a motte. The site consists of an oval mound with steep sides and a level summit measuring approximately 40m north south by 25m east west. Surrounded by a ditch on all except the south west side (where there is a brook). The ditch is 5m wide and up to 2m deep. There is a causeway across the ditch in the north east quarter. (PastScape)

a fortified-site of late construction and representative of land tenure, held for part of a knight's fee. (Phillips 2005)

On the bases of isolated location of no particular strategic value the PastScape interpretation may have more credibility but in Marches it could possibly be a small castle.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
PastScape   County HER   Scheduling        
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:21:32

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