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North Lees moat

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
North Leys

In the civil parish of North Stainley With Sleningford.
In the historic county of Yorkshire.
Modern Authority of North Yorkshire.
1974 county of North Yorkshire.
Medieval County of Yorkshire West Riding.

OS Map Grid Reference: SE30177368
Latitude 54.15802° Longitude -1.53931°

North Lees moat has been described as a probable Pele Tower.

There are earthwork remains.


The small island of the moated earthwork at North Lees is considerably raised above the natural level and there are the vestigia of what would seem to have been a large drum tower, which occupies almost the entire width of the north end through which passed the approach. It is locally spoken of as Roman but traces of the usual feeders and water courses show it to be mediaeval. It stands in Ripon Parks and perhaps represents a keeper's lodge provided with a look-out tower (Allcroft, 1908). The moated feature shows clearly and what may be the outline of associated buildings possibly associated with the site appear to the north west (F1 RDL 01-DEC-61). The moat is now dry, and is little more than a superficial depression. The central platform, has an average height of 1.0m. No foundations are visible, but some isolated stones are evident at the northern end. Surrounding the moated feature are the remains of an outer enclosure. A further series of slight banks and baulks to the north and west are probably the remains of associated cultivation and pastoral enclosures (F2 RWE 15-FEB-64). Elements of this site are visible as earthworks on historic air photos and more recent lidar-derived images. The moat is located at SE 3017 7368, its inner platform measures approximately 36x16m. At its northern end there is a small sub-circular depression, which is perhaps the robber trench identified by Allcroft. There is a trace of an outwork or outer enclosure of rectilinear form visible at SE 3015 7365. There are traces of other ditches and banks to the west of the moat and these may be the remains of a settlement. (PastScape)

The suggestion this was a lookout tower is open to question but the circular foundations remain visible on the air photo.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:08

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