Possible Moated Site 100m S of Church

Description of this historic site

Evidence from aerial photographs, backed up by documentary evidence, suggests that this is the site of a Medieval moat, a wide ditch usually surrounding a building. It is still visible as an earthwork, and is situated 50m south of St Mary's Church, Priors Hardwick.

Notes about this historic site

1 A particularly large moated (?) earthwork near the church could have been the manor house.
2 Plan.
3 Aerial photographs.
4 A settlement is first recorded as one of 24 vills granted to Earl Leofric to found a monastery at Coventry, the grant was confrimed by Edward the Confessor in 1024. The manor house is believed to have lain in the north western part of the settlement, close to the church in the valley. Here there are a large number of irregular enclosures defined by deep ditches and platforms. The dirches are up to 2 m deep and 4-5m wide. They are believed to represent the hollow ways and boundaries although some may have been water-filled and may have acted as leats to fishponds. The uneven suface suggests the buried remains of buildings may survive, these are believed to include a manor houe and its associated agricultural and ancilliary buildings. The Manor was in the hands of Coventry Priory and demense land was customarily managed separately from that of the village, allowing more numerous and extensive construction of individual stock pens and and garden enclosures.
5 LIDAR suggests that this is unlikely to be a moated enclosure, as the circuit is not complete, so the suggested site of a manor house does remain possible.

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