Marche Hall

Has been described as a Certain Timber Castle (Ringwork)

There are earthwork remains

NameMarche Hall
Alternative NamesBrerelawe; Berelawe; Westbury Station
Historic CountryShropshire
Modern AuthorityShropshire
1974 AuthorityShropshire
Civil ParishWestbury

The ringwork and bailey south west of Lyndale survives well and is a good example of its class. The ringwork appears largely undisturbed and will retain archaeological information relating to its date, construction and occupation. Environmental evidence relating to the landscape in which the monument was constructed will be preserved in the fill of the ringwork ditch. The bailey, although somewhat reduced by past ploughing, will also retain archaeological information relating to its construction and use. Such monuments, when considered either as single monuments or as part of the broader medieval landscape contribute valuable evidence relating to the settlement pattern, economy and social organisation of the countryside during the medieval period.

The monument includes the remains of a small ringwork and bailey castle situated on the summit of a prominent knoll. The ringwork is roughly oval in plan with overall dimensions of 44m north west to south east by 24m transversley. It has been formed by scarping the hilltop to form a flat topped platform up to 1.6m above the surrounding land, with faint traces of a surrounding ditch 3m wide and 0.1m deep. The earthwork remains of a bailey enclosure lie attached to the north side of the ringwork. The bailey is defined around its west and north sides as a low scarp 0.5m high formed by cutting back the hillslope. The eastern side of the bailey can no longer be recognised as a surface earthwork but will survive as a buried feature. The hamlet of Berelawe recorded in the 13th century has been identified with the site and the field surrounding the monument was named on a map of 1840 as 'the Briarleys'. (Scheduling Report)

Earthwork occupies the summit of a prominent knoll. Now exists as an oval platform up to 1.7m in height, 34m NW/SE by 27m NE/SW

Faint trace of surrounding ditch (OS FI 1971).

Hamlet of Berelawe (SA 3971) which Eyton records in C13 can be identified with this ringwork near Westbury Station. Fields surrounding the site on 1840 TA map were called Briarleys, a name which survives locally to the present day (Lawson 1965). (Shropshire HER)

Gatehouse Comments

The 'correct' spelling of the manor seems to Brerelawe, rather than the Berelawe used in the Shropshire HER. This was perhaps a isolated farmstead held by tenure of some military service rather than a hamlet. The isolation may be a reason for the defensive embankment.

- Philip Davis

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 ReferenceSJ342107
Latitude52.6907196044922
Longitude-2.97417998313904
Eastings334250
Northings310770
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink

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Books

  • Duckers, Peter and Anne, 2006, Castles of Shropshire (Stroud: Tempus) p. 109-10
  • Salter, Mike, 2001 (2edn), The Castles and Moated Mansions of Shropshire (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 87 (slight)
  • Jackson, M.J.,1988, Castles of Shropshire (Shrewsbury: Shropshire Libraries) p. 36
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 431 (Westbury No. 3)
  • Gaydon, A.T. (ed), 1968, VCH Shropshire Vol. 8 p. 195, 296, 305
  • Wall (after Downham), 1908, in Page, Wm (ed), VCH Shropshire Vol. 1 p. 382
  • Eyton, R.W., 1858, Antiquities of Shropshire (London: John Russell Smith) Vol. 7 p. 170-71 (tenurial history) online copy

Journals

  • King, D.J.C. and Alcock, L., 1969, 'Ringworks in England and Wales' Ch√Ęteau Gaillard Vol. 3 p. 90-127
  • Lawson, J., 1965, Shropshire Archaeological Society newsletter Vol. 28 p. 23
  • King, D.J.C. and Spurgeon, C.J., 1965, 'The mottes in the Vale of Montgomery' Archaeologia Cambrensis Vol. 114 p. 82
  • 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
  • Chitty, Lily, 1949, 'Subsidiary Castle Sites West of Shrewsbury' Transactions of the Shropshire Archaeological Society Vol. 53 p. 83-90

Other

  • Historic England, 2015, Heritage at Risk West Midlands Register 2015 (London: Historic England) p. 27 online copy (new entry)
  • English Heritage, 1995, Scheduling Papers (Revision, 20/11/1995)
  • Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission, 1983, Scheduled Monument Reports on SAMs 13502 and 14324