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Gilmorton Motte and Moat

In the civil parish of Gilmorton.
In the historic county of Leicestershire.
Modern Authority of Leicestershire.
1974 county of Leicestershire.
Medieval County of Leicestershire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SP56888791
Latitude 52.48564° Longitude -1.16259°

Gilmorton Motte and Moat has been described as a certain Timber Castle.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


Mount and bailey of an early castle (Gilmorton) supplemented on the north-west by a manorial moat. The moat is rectangular with a revetment. The circular mount has a flat top, and an escarpment of 21 ft. into a wide fosse, with a counterscarp of 6 ft; the latter, however, has been destroyed on the eastern side by a footpath. The bailey is small, of horse-shoe shaped plan, situated on the north-west of the fortress, and the fosse, which merges with that around the mount- is clearly marked on its western side only, the other portions are but just traceable, being cut up by two paths and generally levelled by the tread of cattle (VCH)

Almost touching the north-west of the bailey of the castle mount is a small rectangular moat with a revetment. (VCH)

Some doubt has been thrown on the proposed bailey, the surviving bit of ditch may simple represent a drainage ditch for the ditch around the motte, which is a slightly raised, ditched building platform, or some later water management feature connected to the fish ponds. A square earthwork to the north-west of the motte has been interpreted as a moated successor to to the castle but Creighton reinterprets it a fish-stew. The whole is a modest manorial centre with some slight defensive features and some fishponds. The building were clearly mainly timber throughout the medieval period. In fact this is not untypical for a great many 'castle' sites and Gilmorton is exceptional only in not having a later house destroy the ditched building platform.
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This record last updated 15/08/2017 15:56:48

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