Stapleton Motte

Has been described as a Certain Timber Castle (Motte)

There are earthwork remains

NameStapleton Motte
Alternative NamesStapeleton-in-Legharness
Historic CountryShropshire
Modern AuthorityShropshire
1974 AuthorityShropshire
Civil ParishCondover

The motte castle south east of Stapleton church survives well and is a good example of its class. It will retain archaeological information relating to its construction, date and nature of occupation. Environmental evidence relating to the landscape in which it was constructed will be preserved sealed on the old ground surface beneath the motte and in the ditch fill. Such motte castles, when considered either as single monuments, or as a part of the broader medieval landscape, contribute valuable information concerning the settlement pattern, economy and social structure of the countryside during the medieval period. In this respect the proximity of the parish church to the north west of the motte is considered of interest.

The monument includes the remains of a small motte castle situated on the north bank of a tributary of Cound Brook. The motte is believed to be the castle of Stapeleton-in-Legharness founded during the 12th century and which was in the custody of King John in 1207. The castle lies within the main north to south valley communication route along the Cound Brook valley south of Shrewsbury. It includes a castle mound, or motte, roughly circular in plan with a base diameter of 31m which rises 3m to a flat summit 22m in diameter. A slight hollow 2m wide and up to 0.3m deep around the north quarter of the site, through which the churchyard path runs, represents the only visible portion of the surrounding ditch. The ditch will survive as a buried feature of a similar width around the remaining sides of the mound. The eastern boundary of the churchyard crosses the motte summit and there are five grave markers set upon the part of the summit which falls within the churchyard. No bailey associated with the motte has yet been traced. (Scheduling Report)

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSJ471044
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  • Duckers, Peter and Anne, 2006, Castles of Shropshire (Stroud: Tempus) p. 154-5
  • Salter, Mike, 2001 (2edn), The Castles and Moated Mansions of Shropshire (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 75
  • Jackson, M.J.,1988, Castles of Shropshire (Shrewsbury: Shropshire Libraries) p. 56
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2
  • Gaydon, A.T. (ed), 1968, VCH Shropshire Vol. 8 p. 162
  • Harvey, Alfred, 1911, Castles and Walled Towns of England (London: Methuen and Co)
  • Wall (after Downham), 1908, in Page, Wm (ed), VCH Shropshire Vol. 1 p. 387-8
  • Eyton, R.W., 1860, Antiquities of Shropshire (London: John Russell Smith) Vol. 11 p. 344-6 (tenurial history) online copy
  • Hartshorne, C.H., 1841, Salopia Antiqua (London) p. 100 (a dubious reference)


  • Hogg, A.H.A. and King, D.J.C., 1963, 'Early castles in Wales and the Marches: a preliminary list' Archaeologia Cambrensis Vol. 112 p. 77-124
  • Oakley, 1937-8, Transactions of the Shropshire Archaeological and Historical Society Vol. 49 p. 43-8
  • Eyton, R.W., 1887, 'The castles of Shropshire' Transactions of the Shropshire Archaeological and Historical Society Vol. 10 p. 27


  • English Heritage, 2011, Heritage at Risk Register 2011 West Midlands (London: English Heritage) p. 32 online copy
  • English Heritage, 2010, Heritage at Risk Register 2010 West Midlands (London: English Heritage) p. 33 online copy
  • English Heritage, 2009, Heritage at Risk Register 2009 West Midlands (London: English Heritage) p. 43 online copy
  • English Heritage, 1995, Scheduling Papers (Affirmation, 08/11/1995)
  • Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission, 1986, Scheduled Monument Report on SAM 21044