Monument details

HER Number:1770/0/0
Type of record:Archaeology
Name:Grafton deserted medieval village & ornamental pond


Possible deserted hamlet of Grafton. A roughly rectangular complex of several small ditched enclosures observed from the air, which appear to be overlain by the ornamental moat (RN:1770/1/2). The area has marked ridge and furrow which is crossed by a former road or track, now a hollow way, coming from the north in the direction of the hall site. The hollow way respects the groups of ridge and furrow, but ignores the modern driveway. The ridge and furrow stops at the complex of enclosures. These enclosures probably represent at least some of the tofts and crofts of Grafton. The placename first occurs in 1319 and Grafton was still a distinct hamlet within Tilston parish in 1724.

Ridge and furrow is the distinctive pattern of earthworks that are created when land has been ploughed to create cultivation beds. The furrow is the ploughed line and the ridge is the bank of soil used to grow crops in. This system has operated in Britain since before the Anglo-Saxon period.

Medieval and later villages were abandoned by their inhabitants for many reasons. The effects of disease and poor harvests made rural living difficult, and whole communities are thought to have relocated to urban settlements. Landowners sometimes relocated settlements for aesthetic reasons and for landscaping. Once abandoned the villages quickly became derelict and were not inhabited again surviving only as earthworks, often visible only from aerial photographs. They can also be identified by documentary evidence or the presence of a church where there is no settlement.


Monument Types

  • CROFT ( some (1-100), Medieval - 1066 AD? to 1539 AD)
  • DESERTED SETTLEMENT (Deserted hamlet, Medieval - 1066 AD? to 1539 AD (?))
  • ENCLOSURE ( some (1-100), Medieval - 1066 AD? to 1539 AD)
  • HOLLOW WAY (Medieval - 1066 AD? to 1539 AD)
  • ROAD (Road-minor, Medieval - 1066 AD? to 1539 AD)
  • TOFT ( some (1-100), Medieval - 1066 AD? to 1539 AD)
Protected Status:Scheduled Monument 1011031: Grafton Deserted Medieval Village And Ornamental Moat

Related records

1770/2Related to: Medieval Rabbit Warren in Grafton (Monument)

Cheshire East Council and Cheshire West & Chester Council - Working in Partnership
Heritage Lottery Fund