Givendale Manor House

Has been described as a Questionable Timber Castle (Motte), and also as a Questionable Fortified Manor House

There are earthwork remains

NameGivendale Manor House
Alternative NamesGindene
Historic CountryYorkshire
Modern AuthorityNorth Yorkshire
1974 AuthorityNorth Yorkshire
Civil ParishGivendale

Givendale. These earthworks, erroneously described on some maps as a camp, represent the mediaeval manor house of the Ward family (Wood). who acquired Givendale before 1266. A motte still {c. 1934} indicates the site, and the outbuildings of the modern farm contain or recently contained carved stones from what was described by Leland as "a fair Manor Place of stone" (Leland). The moat was fed from a spring on the slope, and the position of the abutments of the bridge is clearly marked at the northern angle (Allcroft).

"An undated document records the grant to William Warde of the right to have a chapel and chaplain at Givendale (possibly the chapel of St. Thomas referred to in 1410)" (Gowland).

Behind the ancient house Great Givendale is what appears to have been a moated piece of ground, locally called the Roman Camp. G. Mangles, the occupier has frequently picked up pieces of tesselated pavements here. (Sheahan)

A large moated enclosure still partially waterfilled on the easter side. No trace of any motte is visible and the feature has no Roman affinities. (Field Investigators Comments–F1 RL 19-FEB-63).

A moat or large ditched enclosure of possible medieval date along with the remains of a palaeochannel of uncertain date and a trackway of medieval or perhaps more likely post medieval date are all visible as earthworks on air photographs. This feature is situated on a low terrace above the River Ure at SE336 693.

The moat platform is sub-oval in plan and measures approximately 75x65m. The eastern ditch of the moat is broad (up to 30m) and flat-bottomed and appears to have been dug into an old meander of the River Ure. In turn this meander had cut into the higher river terrace to form a low cliff which further protects and defines the eastern side of the enclosure. The western-side of the moat is defined by a somewhat narrower ditch (c. 7m wide) and an internal bank

There is a small mound, perhaps the bridge abutment mentioned above, at the northern end of the enclosure at SE3368 6935. (PastScape)

Gatehouse Comments

King writes possible motte. Site associated with possible DMV. Leland writes 'There is a fine stone manor house here, which used to belong to Ward.' Any mound is likely to be a collapsed building but this may well have been a fortified manor house and may have had older origins as the moat is not a neat sharp angled square moat but a quadrant. The moat had two large wide arms which may be an adapted oxbow lake; the other arms of the 'moat are actually fairly narrow ditches.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSE337693
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink

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  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 531 (possible)
  • Allcroft, A. Hadrian, 1908, Earthwork of England (London) p. 3461-2 online copy
  • Sheahan, J.J., 1871, History and Topography of the Wapentake of Claro p. 252


  • Chandler, John, 1993, John Leland's Itinerary: travels in Tudor England  (Sutton Publishing) p. 559
  • Toulmin-Smith, Lucy (ed), 1907, The itinerary of John Leland in or about the years 1535-1543 (London: Bell and Sons) Vol. 1 p. 83 online copy


  • Gowland, T.S., 1934-6, Yorkshire Archaeological Journal Vol. 32 p. 62


  • Creighton, O.H., 1998, Castles and Landscapes: An Archaeological Survey of Yorkshire and the East Midlands (PhD Thesis University of Leicester) p. 294, 594-5 online copy
  • Wood, E.S., 1952, Archaeology of Nidderdale p. 16