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Hoddesdon Bury Cock Lane mound

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Broxbornebury Park; Hoddesdonbury

In the civil parish of Hoddesdon.
In the historic county of Hertfordshire.
Modern Authority of Hertfordshire.
1974 county of Hertfordshire.
Medieval County of Hertfordshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: TL355078
Latitude 51.75285° Longitude -0.03708°

Hoddesdon Bury Cock Lane mound has been described as a Timber Castle although is doubtful that it was such.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


An earthwork mound of uncertain date was excavated by Sir John Evans in 1901. Roman pottery was found indicating a possible Roman Barrow. These finds are now considered to be residual and the Mound is now interpreted as a small Motte Castle and is scheduled as such. (PastScape)

A large mound, 20m diam, 3m high, surrounded by a deep ditch 8m wide x 2.5m deep. Beyond the ditch, a slight bank 1m wide by 0.3m high is visible. On the eastern side of the ditch is a modern causeway 8m wide. A small excavation in 1901 by Sir John Evans revealed some pottery, a quern stone and charred remains. The excavation trench is visible as a hollow in the top of the motte which extends down the southern side. The motte stands on a ridge, and would have dominated the locality. Originally interpreted as a barrow by Evans, the mound is characteristic of Norman fortifications of the early post-Conquest period. (Hertfordshire HER)

On the south side of Cock Lane opposite Hoddesdonbury, this mound is a Scheduled Monument. The mound is 20m across and about 3m high, and is surrounded by a dry ditch and a slight outer bank. In 1901 Sir John Evans dug into the mound itself and found a small amount of redeposited debris which appeared to be Roman, demonstrating that the mound was later (Evans 1902). In form it is a motte castle, typical of many built soon after the Norman conquest. It would have had a palisade on top, enclosing a timber tower. In more settled times the motte was abandoned, presumably for the new manor house of Hoddesdonbury. (Extensive Urban Survey)

Isolated from modern settlement, so questionable as to what locality was it dominating. The 'Bury' place-name is suggestive of a Saxon thegnal site so possible a reworking of that by a minor Norman knight to assert his new dominion or maybe this is a barrow despite the seemly strong assertion made by the scheduling (the quality and interpretation of Evans's excavation may be open to question). The full PastScape report includes the statement 'The purpose of this mound must be considered uncertain on ground and excavation evidence; its classification as a motte is doubtful.' There is nothing that excludes this being a barrow (prehistoric, roman or saxon) as had previous been thought.
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:21:01

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