REASONS FOR DESIGNATION
Around 6,000 moated sites are known in England. They consist of wide ditches, often or seasonally water-filled, partly or completely enclosing one or more islands of dry ground on which stood domestic or religious buildings. In some cases the islands were used for horticulture. The majority of moated sites served as prestigious aristocratic and seigneurial residences with the provision of a moat intended as a status symbol rather than a practical military defence. The peak period during which moated sites were built was between about 1250 and 1350 and by far the greatest concentration lies in central and eastern parts of England. However, moated sites were built throughout the medieval period, are widely scattered throughout England and exhibit a high level of diversity in their forms and sizes. They form a significant class of medieval monument and are important for the understanding of the distribution of wealth and status in the countryside. Many examples provide conditions favourable to the survival of organic remains.
The site at Duncote Farm is a reasonably well-preserved example of a small homestead moat which exhibits visible evidence of one building and also retains the buried remains of other structures on the island. In addition, recent drainage works in the west arm of the moat have shown that organic and environmental remains survive in the waterlogged deposits.
The monument is a moated site and includes a rectangular platform, measuring 30m by 28m, currently enclosed on three sides by a 10m wide moat which is itself surrounded by an outer bank. Apart from a 10m long stretch at its north end, the east arm of the moat has been filled-in but survives as a buried feature. The original entrance onto the moated platform was via a 7m wide causeway at the north-east corner. The outer bank is best preserved on the north-east side where it measures 1m high by 8m wide and is bisected by a 2m wide channel which acted as an outflow for water draining into the moat at the south-west corner. To the west and south it has been somewhat disturbed by agricultural activities post-dating the abandonment of the moat. The slightly sunken floor of a rectangular building can be seen at the north-west corner of the platform and measures c.15m by 10m. The history of the site is not known, but the moated house may have been abandoned in favour of the current farmhouse which has a datestone inscribed 1796. The surface of the farm track and the fence partially enclosing the moat are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath these features is included.
Book Reference - Title: Victoria County History: Derby I - Date: 1905 - Type: DESC TEXT
Book Reference - Author: Craven, M and Drage, C - Title: Moated Sites List - Date: 1982 - Type: DESC TEXT - Description: SMR
Book Reference - Author: Pilkington, J - Title: A View of the Present State of Derbyshire - Date: 1789 - Volume: 2 - Type: DESC TEXT - Description: Pagination 297