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Morton Bagot Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Moreton Bagot; Lodge House

In the civil parish of Morton Bagot.
In the historic county of Warwickshire.
Modern Authority of Warwickshire.
1974 county of Warwickshire.
Medieval County of Warwickshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SP11366460
Latitude 52.27960° Longitude -1.83473°

Morton Bagot Castle has been described as a probable Timber Castle.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


Traces of a moat near Church Farm, Morton Bagot ,".... may perhaps mark the site of a building described in the 17th century as Lord Carington's Lodge House, which was then the largest house in the village but has now quite disappeared" (VCH). This is a small ring castle situated in a secluded position and in excellent condition apart from beast tread mutilation. The 'traces' of VCH should be disregarded, in actual fact the extant remains are considerable. The interior is occupied by a 17 c. timber-framed barn that is contemporary with Church Farm (to the immediate north-west), there is no surface evidence of an earlier building and the V.C.H. supposition that the earthworks were connected with 'Lodge House' is not feasible. (Field Investigators Comments–F1 FDC 18-JUN-68). (PastScape)

Situation of moat close to the Church implies origin in a manorial context. The size and depth of the earthworks suggests that this may be a small ring-motte. The moat itself is oval in shape, with a broad encircling ring-work and hints of an internal bank. The complex measures 80 by 120m, with the internal platform 65 by 45m. The moat is now very silted on the upper side. No documentary material has been found that refers to the site. The barn standing on the site appears to be constructed out of earlier re-used material, so it is just possible that this could have been the site of Lodge House. (Warwickshire HER)

The moated site 80m south east of Church Farm survives well and is largely unencumbered by modern development. Evidence for the building which originally occupied the moated island will survive beneath the ground surface and the moat arms will retain environmental evidence for the economy of the moated site's inhabitants. The site of the watermill and, in particular, the terrace upon which it is located, and the trackway will provide valuable information for the industrial reuse of the site.
The monument is situated approximately 80m south east of Church Farm, in the parish of Morton Bagot, and includes a moated site, the site of a watermill and a length of a trackway. The moated site is an irregular ovoid in plan and has been constructed out of the side of a gently sloping hill. It has external dimensions of 120m north west-south east and up to 80m north east-south west. The moat arms have steeply sloping sides and are approximately 15m wide and up to 2.5m deep. They are now mostly dry, although the northern part of the moat remains waterfilled. An external bank, 11m wide across its base, is visible along the south west and southern sides of the moat. The south east part of the moat has become infilled, but it will survive as a buried feature, and part of the external bank in this area has been levelled. Access onto the moated island is by means of a causeway across the north west part of the moat and this is thought to mark the site of the original entrance to the site. The moated island itself, has an oval plan and measures 65m north west-south east and 45m north east-south west, an area of approximately 0.28ha. It has been artificially raised above the surrounding ground surface and is now partly occupied by a 17th century timber-framed barn, Listed Grade II, and a modern agricultural building. These structures are not included in the scheduling. There are intermittent traces of an inner bank around the perimeter of the moated island. Documentary records indicate that during the 17th century the moated site was occupied by a building described as Lord Carrington's Lodge House. In the northern part of the site, the northern side of the moat has been modified and widened. A retaining bank, 10m wide, has been constructed along the northern side of the moat arm in order to create a waterfilled pond. This pond was described as a fishpond in the 19th century but it is thought to be the remains of a millpond associated with the earthwork remains of a watermill. The pond would have originally provided a sufficient head of water to drive the mill-wheel. The mill site is located at the southern end of a levelled terrace and immediately to the east of the millpond at the north east end of the retaining bank. The terrace is aligned north west-south east and has been cut into the hillside. Although no longer visible on the ground surface, the mill building and its associated wheel-pit will survive as buried features. A shallow channel, approximately 0.5m wide, is visible running parallel with the south west side of the terrace. This is thought to be the tailrace for the watermill. At the northern end of the terrace the earthwork remains of a trackway are visible. This feature can be traced running eastwards from the terrace towards the site of a pit, now disused, which is approximately 60m to the north east of the terrace. The trackway clearly links the site of the watermill with the disused pit. (Scheduling Report)

Seems to have been described as a ringwork only by a field investigator in 1968 otherwise called a moated site. The scheduling report records 'intermittent traces of an inner bank around the perimeter of the moated island' and if there was a inner bank then this does seem to be a ringwork castle. This beggars the question as to how many other oval moats are actually ringwork castles that have totally lost the inner bank as the enclosed space has been expanded.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:09

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