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Monument record MDR2308 - Hope Motte, south-west of St Peter's Church, Hope

Type and Period (1)

  • (Saxon to Medieval - 410 AD to 1539 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

SK 1715 8342 : Hope, Motte: Mound with surrounding ditch, but without outer bailey. ?Motte and bailey castle. A deed temp. EDWARD I [1272-1307] mentions a castle at HOPE. (1, 2) The mound surveyed at 1/2500 has been badly mutilated on its southern side by modern landscape gardening. An outer ditch is visible on the west but this gradually disappears on the northern side. On the south the feature appears to have been protected by Peakdale Water which has now changed its course. No foundations are visible but the mound still retains the appearance of a motte although no evidence of an outer bailey can be traced. No further information was obtained by local enquiries. (3) Revised survey of 7th March 1962 found correct. (4) Dimensions: Diameter is 42m, Height is 3m. A ditch is visible on the west, 7m wide and 1.5m deep, disappearing towards the north. (5) The monument includes the mound and ditch of Hope Motte, an earthwork situated on a natural spur overlooking the Peakshole Water in the village of Hope. To the north east of the mound stands the parish church. The mound is likely to date to the early Norman period or possibly to the late Anglo-Saxon period. Over time, the Peakshole Water has eroded the base of the mound causing general slippage of part of the earthwork. From the north, the mound is approximately 4.5m high but from the south the earthwork rises to about 11m above the river, due to the landslope. The mound has become truncated on its southern side due to river erosion, forming a crescent shaped earthwork. The mound has overall dimensions of approximately 45m by 28m. The riverine erosion has exposed part of the interior of the mound and shows that it is composed of earth and shale of local origin. The mound is typical of other motte earthworks in the region, being conical with a flat top. To the north and west of the mound is a shallow ditch about 7m wide and up to 1.5m deep. It is likely that the ditch was originally much deeper but has become infilled with material gradually eroded from the mound. Due to river erosion, it is not possible to say whether there was ever a ditch around the southern edge of the mound. To the immediate east of the earthwork stands a private dwelling, the garden and yard of which have obscured any evidence for a ditch on this side. There is no evidence for an outer bailey associated with the mound. However, more recent buildings, roads and yards may have obscured such evidence. To the east of the mound stands the church of St Peter's, a pre-Conquest foundation with a tenth century cross shaft in the churchyard, a reminder that Hope was an important centre during the Anglo-Saxon period. Indeed, it is possible that the earthwork could date to the later Anglo-Saxon period. Such earthworks are known to have been built at important locations during this period and sometimes they also functioned as administrative meeting places, known as `moots'. However, it is thought likely that Hope Motte was erected during the 11th century as one of a series of similar strongpoints built in Britain by the Normans. The Norman military focus was later transferred to Peveril Castle at Castleton, 2km to the west. A castle was mentioned at Hope during the reign of Edward I (1272-1307) and may well refer to these earthworks. (6)

Sources/Archives (8)

  • <1> Index: Preston, F L. 1956. Transcript Hunter Index. No.2, F/88.
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: Porter, W S. 1923. Notes from a Peakland Parish.
  • <3> Personal Observation: F1 RL 13-MAR-62.
  • <4> Personal Observation: F2 BHS 03-SEP-65.
  • <5> Index: NDAT. 1324.
  • <6> Scheduling record: English Heritage. 1998. Scheduling Notification. 29812. Cat. No.:392.
  • <7> Photograph: Peak District National Park Authority (PDNPA). Black and white photograph collection. 481.16.
  • <8> Photograph: Peak District National Park Authority (PDNPA). Slide Collection. 8111.1-4.



Grid reference Centred SK 1715 8343 (61m by 42m) (Centre)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (2)

  • EDR788
  • EDR1064

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Record last edited

Mar 17 2015 3:55PM

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