Warcop Vicarage Moat

Has been described as a Questionable Fortified Manor House

There are no visible remains

NameWarcop Vicarage Moat
Alternative Names
Historic CountryWestmorland
Modern AuthorityCumbria
1974 AuthorityCumbria
Civil ParishWarcop

A fragmentary moated or ditched enclosure of nearly rectangular shape. Partly destroyed by houses and and gardens but apparently enclosing an area of about 2 acres. There is an outer bank along the west side of the enclosure (OS).

"The vicarage house hath been anciently moated round, including the garden, orchard and outhouses; with a drawbridge at the entrance" (Nicolson and Burns).

Vertical photographs show the moat has a feeder leat (recorded as NY 71 NW 55) connecting it to the Crooks Beck (between NY 7412 1575 and NY 7425 1567). (PastScape)

Gatehouse Comments

There was a more modest moat on the east side of the vicarage, presumably a garden moat. The moat to the west of the vicarage is a good size. The S and W arms are well preserved; the N arm is less well preserved presumably because of some infilling associated with grave digging in the adjacent church yard. There may never have been an E arm although it may also have been totally infilled when the vicarage was rebuilt. The parish history given by Curwen suggest the moat may have been dug in the early C14 when the vicarage came fully into the hands of Shap Abbey. The moat is suggested as a protection from the Scots although the church tithes and wool stores would have been a tempting target for more local thieves. The recorded drawbridge may well have been a simple affair and no gatehouse is recorded and it does not seem that the moated area was walled. It may well be the moat had a secondary function as a simple fishpond. The moat is more impressive than the usual homestead moat, probably reflecting the status of the Abbey, but it is not a fortified house.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceNY742156
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink

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  • Perriam, Denis and Robinson, John, 1998, The Medieval Fortified Buildings of Cumbria (Kendal: CWAAS Extra Series 29) p. 313
  • RCHME, 1936, An inventory of the historical monuments in Westmorland (HMSO) p. 240 No. 10 online transcription
  • Curwen, J.F., 1932, 'Parishes (East Ward): St Colombe, Warcop' The Later Records relating to North Westmorland: or the Barony of Appleby (Kendal: CWAAS Record Series 8) p. 227 online transcription
  • Parson, W. and White, W., 1829, History, Directory and Gazetteer of the Counties of Westmorland and Cumberland (Leeds) p. 570-1 online copy
  • Hodgson, J., 1810, Topographical and Historical Description of Westmoreland p. 155 online copy
  • Nicolson, J. and Burns, R., 1777, History and Antiquities of the Counties of Westmorland and Cumberland Vol. I p. 602 online copy