The comprehensive gazetteer and bibliography of the medieval castles, fortifications and palaces of England, Wales, the Islands.
The listings
Other Info
Print Page 
Next Record 
Previous Record 
Back to list 

Horsmonden Share Farm

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;

In the civil parish of Horsmonden.
In the historic county of Kent.
Modern Authority of Kent.
1974 county of Kent.
Medieval County of Kent.

OS Map Grid Reference: TQ71563924
Latitude 51.12675° Longitude 0.45034°

Horsmonden Share Farm has been described as a probable Fortified Manor House.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


The moated site at Share Farm is a particularly informative example. It is in an excellent state of preservation, with many of the slight earthworks which illustrate the manner of water management at the site still visible, and hence displays a considerable diversity of individual components. The archaeological potential of the site is great, since the continued waterlogging of the moat provides excellent conditions for the preservation of normally perishable artefacts, and also of evidence from seeds and pollen of the environment and economy of the site while it was in use. On flat ground to the east of Share Farm is a square double-moated enclosure with further natural barriers in the form of watercourses on both east and west sides. The moats are now almost dry, but would originally have formed wide slow-moving water courses. The monument includes the entire area between the outer water courses. Moated sites are generally seen as prestigious residences of the Lords of the Manor. The moat marked the high status of the occupier of the site, but also served to deter casual raiders and wild animals. Most moats were constructed between 1250 and 1350, and it is to this period that the example at Share Farm is likely to date. The position of bridges which provided access onto the moat island is indicated by embankments at the mid-point of the western moat arms. The water in the inner and outer moats appears to have been kept separate, perhaps so that the outer moat could act as a fishpond without risk of contamination from the rubbish and sewage which was probably thrown into the inner moat. With a relatively small central island on which to build, it is considered likely that the area to the north of the artificial moats was also used for stables and other purposes. For these buildings the water channels on both sides and formerly to the south as well would have acted as a natural moat. (Scheduling Report)

Double concentric moats at Share Farm, Horsmonden. The site is further strengthened by its being placed within the fork of two streams which almost enclose it. The strongly defensive nature of the site suggests a possible late-Saxon date, Scheduled (Allcroft; VCH).
A homestead moat, as described above, now dry, but well preserved. It can be compared in plan, though it is smaller, with the 14th c. fortified manor house site of La Mote near Iden, Rye. There seems to be nothing to suggest that it is Saxon (F1 ASP 25-OCT-62).
An exceptionally good example of a medieval homestead most, with two complete concentric moats, (with entrance causeway on the west) and the streams forming a third, for which the western back water has clearly been deliberately widened. The inner ditches are now dry. Situated on an open meadow and perfectly preserved. Some cottages stood within the moat in the 18th century (1986 Record Form). (PastScape)

Which of the many manors within Horsmonden this site represents is not clear. Whilst these impressive moats clearly fit within the fashion of moated sites (and, possible, perceived defensive needs) this specific location must have been initially marshy and subject to flooding and the moats may have had a function in drainage and flood protection. Gould noted some water flow control features for the site but interpreted these in a defensive way suggesting the whole area between the two natural streams could be flooded (NB the western stream is no longer water filled). Whilst there were some cottages on the island in the C19 the site is now unoccupied.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
PastScape   County HER   Scheduling        
Maps >
Streetmap   NLS maps   Where's the path   Old-Maps      
Data/Maps > 
Magic   V. O. B.   Geology   LiDAR   Open Domesday  
Air Photos > 
Bing Maps   Google Maps   Getmapping   ZoomEarth      
Photos >
CastleFacts   Geograph   Flickr   Panoramio      

Sources of information, references and further reading
Most of the sites or buildings recorded in this web site are NOT open to the public and permission to visit a site must always be sought from the landowner or tenant.
It is an offence to disturb a Scheduled Monument without consent. It is a destruction of everyone's heritage to remove archaeological evidence from ANY site without proper recording and reporting.
Don't use metal detectors on historic sites without authorisation.
The information on this web page may be derived from information compiled by and/or copyright of Historic England, County Historic Environment Records and other individuals and organisations. It may also contain information licensed under the Open Government Licence. All the sources given should be consulted to identify the original copyright holder and permission obtained from them before use of the information on this site for commercial purposes.
The author and compiler of Gatehouse does not receive any income from the site and funds it himself. The information within this site is provided freely for educational purposes only.
The bibliography owes much to various bibliographies produced by John Kenyon for the Council for British Archaeology, the Castle Studies Group and others.
Suggestions for finding online and/or hard copies of bibliographical sources can be seen at this link.
Minor archaeological investigations, such as watching brief reports, and some other 'grey' literature is most likely to be held by H.E.R.s but is often poorly referenced and is unlikely to be recorded here, or elsewhere, but some suggestions can be found here.
The possible site or monument is represented on maps as a point location. This is a guide only. It should be noted that OS grid references defines an area, not a point location. In practice this means the actual center of the site or monument may often, but not always, be to the North East of the point shown. Locations derived from OS grid references and from latitude longitiude may differ by a small distance.
Further information on mapping and location can be seen at this link.
Please help to make this as useful a resource as possible by contacting Gatehouse if you see errors, can add information or have suggestions for improvements in functality and design.
Help is acknowledged.
This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:19:31

Home | Books | Links | Fortifications and Castles | Other Information | Help | Downloads | Author Information | Contact