List entry

List entry Summary

This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Moot Mound 400m west of Knox Bridge

List entry Number: 1013147

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County District District Type Parish
KentMaidstoneDistrict AuthorityStaplehurst

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 09-Oct-1981

Date of most recent amendment: 16-Jul-1991

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 12842

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Moots were open-air meeting places set aside for use by courts and other bodies who were responsible for the administration and organisation of the countryside in Anglo-Saxon and medieval England. They were located at convenient, conspicuous or well-known sites, often centrally placed within the area under jurisdiction, usually a hundred, wapentake, or shire. The meeting place could take several forms: a natural feature such as a hilltop, tree or rock; existing man-made features such as prehistoric standing stones, barrows or hillforts; or a purpose-built monument such as a mound. Moots appear to have been first established during the early medieval period between the seventh and ninth centuries AD. Examples are recorded in the Domesday Book and other broadly contemporary documents. Initially, moots were situated in open countryside but, over time, they were relocated in villages or towns. The construction and use of rural moots declined after the 13th century. The normal form of purpose-built moot was the moot mound. These take the form of large, squat, turf-covered mounds with a flat or concave top, usually surrounded by a ditch. Occasionally, prehistoric barrows were remodelled to provide suitable sites. It is estimated that there were between 250 and 1000 moots in medieval England, although only a limited number of these were man- made mounds and only a proportion of these survive today. Moots are generally a poorly understood class of monument with considerable potential to provide information on the organisation and administration of land units in the Middle Ages. They are a comparatively rare and long-lived type of monument and the earliest examples will be amongst a very small range of sites predating the Norman Conquest which survive as monumental earthworks and readily appreciable landscape features. On this basis, all well preserved or historically well documented moot mounds are identified as nationally important.

The example near Knox Bridge survives extremely well and is of high archaeological potential. It is associated with a range of other types of monument, including the moated site of the head manor of Lovehurst, and is well-documented both archaeologically and historically.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The monument near Knox Bridge, formerly interpreted as the site of a Norman motte castle, includes a moot mound and its surrounding quarry ditch. The mound is circular in plan and measures some 50m in diameter. In height it stands 2.8m above the level of the surrounding ground. A berm of 3m separates the mound from the surrounding ditch, which is some 5m across and now less than 1m deep, although this is largely the result of silting and the ditch must formerly have been considerably deeper in order to provide sufficient material for the construction of the mound. The most characteristic feature of the moot mound is the deep, bowl-shaped depression in the interior which served as the arena for debate and decision- making. This depression is 2m deep and 27m in diameter. The moot mound lies near the present boundaries between the parishes of Frittenden, Staplehurst and Cranbrook which formed the Hundred of Cranbrooke and over which the moot court had jurisdiction.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Hasted, E, History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent, (1798)
Other
May, 1978, Maidstone Area Archaeological Group, (1978)
TQ 74 SE,

National Grid Reference: TQ 78429 40676

Map


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This copy shows the entry on 31-Oct-2014 at 10:06:00.