Deserted Medieval Village of Hamilton, Hamilton Lane, Barkby Thorpe (Ancient Monument)

Geo: 52.6607, -1.0502
Date ListedWed 30th September, 1992
CategoryScheduled Ancient Monument
AddressDeserted medieval village of Hamilton Hamilton Lane, Barkby Thorpe Barkby Thorpe
GradeAncient Monuments
Grid ReferenceSK6433807421
LBSMonument Number 17068
Volume, Map, Item17068
ParishBarkby Thorpe

The deserted village site at Hamilton is located between the villages of Scraptoft and Barkby Thorpe on the north east side of the city of Leicester and includes a moated site and a fishpond contained within the village earthworks.
The area of village earthworks is contained within a roughly rectangular area measuring approximately 330m x 300m which is crossed by the Scraptoft to Barkby Thorpe road on its eastern side and the Melton Brook on the northern side. The boundaries of the medieval village are clearly defined by a bank 1.5m high on the south side beyond which lies ridge and furrow ploughing which can also be seen to the north west of the site. A well defined internal street system is evidenced by hollow ways the main examples of which run north south and east west and are up to 1m deep. The village street system does not relate to either the modern road or a footpath which crosses the site. A series of house platforms are evident at least ten of which lie in the northern part of the site. A platform on the south western side of the site is believed to be the site of a chapel. Platforms are often adjacent to closes a large example of which lies on the south east side of the site defined by ditches of about 1m in depth. On the northern side of the close is a rectangular moated area measuring 55m x 45m overall. The moat ditches are approximately 1m deep and 8m in width with a channel leading off on the eastern side. Adjacent to the north western corner but not connected to it is a rectangular fishpond measuring 30m x 10m which is about 1m deep.
The name of Hamilton is first recorded in ca 1125 when it contained 374 acres of land. By 1377 there were only four taxpayers and it is clear that desertion took place in the next century. A chapel dedicated to St John was dependent on Barkby. A series of small excavations were carried out in the years following the Second World War in which a large circular hearth and flooring was discovered together with medieval and Roman finds. The modern road on the eastern side of the site and the footbridge over Melton Brook are excluded from the scheduling although the ground beneath them is included.

The description above describes the salient features of the building as it was at the date of listing. It is given in order to aid identification; it is not intended to be either comprehensive or exclusive.