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Scheduled monuments in Greater Manchester facts for kids

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Smithills Hall in 2004
Smithills Hall is one of several medieval manor houses in Greater Manchester to be protected as a scheduled monument.

There are 37 scheduled monuments in Greater Manchester, a metropolitan county in North West England. In the United Kingdom, a scheduled monument is a "nationally important" archaeological site or historic building that has been given protection against unauthorised change by being placed on a list (or "schedule") by the Secretary of State for Digital Culture, Media and Sport; Historic England recommends sites for scheduling to the Secretary of State. Scheduled monuments are defined in the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 and the National Heritage Act 1983. There are nearly 20,000 entries on the schedule, which is maintained by Historic England as part of the National Heritage List for England; more than one site can be included in a single entry. While a scheduled monument can also be recognised as a listed building, Historic England's aim is to set the most appropriate form of protection in place for the building or site. Applications to deschedule a site are administered Historic England, who will carry out an assessment and make a recommendation to the Secretary of State.

The metropolitan county of Greater Manchester is composed of 10 metropolitan boroughs: Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford and Wigan. Rochdale has no scheduled monuments; those in the other boroughs are listed separately. They range from prehistoric structures – the oldest of which date from the Bronze Age – to more modern structures such as the Astley Green Colliery, from 1908. Greater Manchester has seven prehistoric monuments (i.e. Bronze or Iron Age), found in Bury, Oldham, Salford, Stockport, and Tameside. The Bronze Age sites are mainly cairns and barrows, and both the Iron Age sites are military in nature, promontory forts.

The trend of military sites continues from the Iron Age into the Roman period; two Roman forts in Greater Manchester are scheduled monuments and were the two main areas of Roman activity in the county. Of the nine castles in Greater Manchester, four are scheduled monuments: Buckton Castle, Watch Hill Castle, Bury Castle, and Radcliffe Tower. The last two are fortified manor houses, and although defined as castles were not exclusively military in nature; they probably acted as the administrative centre of the manors they were in. There are several other manor houses and country houses – some with moats – in the county that are protected as scheduled monuments. The Astley Green Colliery, the Marple Aqueduct, Oldknows Limekilns, and the Worsley Delph are scheduled relics of Greater Manchester's industrial history.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Ringley Old Bridge Stone bridge 021677 Stoneclough, Kearsley 53°32′37″N 2°21′26″W / 53.543697°N 2.357316°W / 53.543697; -2.357316 (Ringley Old Bridge) The current bridge over the River Irwell was built in 1677 to replace one washed away in 1673. It is still used today, having been pedestrianised, and is a Grade II* listed building.
Smithills Hall Standing building 0114th century Bolton 53°36′08″N 2°27′15″W / 53.602339°N 2.454235°W / 53.602339; -2.454235 (Smithills Hall) Smithills Hall was originally built in the early 14th century, but was extended in the 15th and 16th centuries. The oldest surviving part is the great hall, which dates from the early 15th century. The site was originally moated, however no trace of the moat survives. Smithills Hall is now a Grade I listed building and open to the public as a museum.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Affetside Cross Stone pillar 0417th or 18th century Affetside 53°37′08″N 2°22′15″W / 53.618987°N 2.370955°W / 53.618987; -2.370955 (Affetside Cross) The pillar was originally a cross and replaced a medieval waymarker in the 17th or 18th centuries. The pillar stands on three circular steps, which probably date from 1890 when the cross was taken down for repairs and re-erected.
Bury Castle Below ground remains 031469 Bury 53°35′37″N 2°17′49″W / 53.593663°N 2.296994°W / 53.593663; -2.296994 (Bury Castle) Bury Castle is a manor house built in 1469, replacing an earlier building on the same site from the late 14th century. It was built by Sir Thomas Pilkington, Lord of the Manors of Bury and Pilkington, and fortified with permission of the king; it was razed to the ground when Sir Thomas had his lands confiscated for supporting the losing side in the War of the Roses. Some of the castle remains have been excavated and are on display to the public.
Castlesteads Earthworks 00200 BC–250 AD Bury 53°36′46″N 2°18′25″W / 53.612875°N 2.306955°W / 53.612875; -2.306955 (Castlesteads) Castlesteads is a promontory fort on the banks of the River Irwell. The site is defended by a 120 m (390 ft) long and 6 m (20 ft) wide ditch, and a silted up channel of the river. The interior is triangular shaped. Pottery finds indicate the site was occupied from 200 BC to 250 AD.
Radcliffe Tower Ruins 011403 Radcliffe 53°33′49″N 2°18′30″W / 53.56361°N 2.308259°W / 53.56361; -2.308259 (Radcliffe Tower) Radcliffe Tower is the only part of a medieval manor house that belonged to James de Radliffe, the Lord of the Manor of Radcliffe, still standing. It was a stone-built hall with two towers, and was surrounded by a moat. The site was fortified with the addition of crenellations and battlements with permission from the king. The manor house was demolished in the 19th century. The tower is now a Grade I listed building.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Baguley Hall Standing building 0214th century Baguley 53°23′42″N 2°16′35″W / 53.394955°N 2.276358°W / 53.394955; -2.276358 (Baguley Hall) The original building was possibly from the 11th or 12th centuries, but the current timber framed house dates from the 14th century. The medieval north wing was refaced in brick. In the 18th century the brick south wing was added. Baguley Hall is considered one of the "finest surviving medieval halls in the northwest of England". It is a Grade I listed building, and is on the Buildings at Risk Register; its condition is rated as "fair" and it is owned by English Heritage.
Clayton Hall Standing building 0415th century Clayton 53°29′00″N 2°10′43″W / 53.483419°N 2.178669°W / 53.483419; -2.178669 (Clayton Hall) The hall, which probably dates back to the 15th century, was probably originally either a quadrangle or consisted of three wings. Much of the hall was demolished in the 17th century and replaced by a new house. Clayton Hall underwent further changes and restoration in the 18th century and in 1900. The hall is on a rectangular island surrounded by a moat and is a Grade II* listed building.
Hanging Bridge Ruins 051421 Cateaton Street, Manchester 53°29′04″N 2°14′36″W / 53.484473°N 2.24333°W / 53.484473; -2.24333 (Hanging Bridge) The current structure was built in 1421; however the first reference to the bridge was in 1343. The bridge, which is 33 m (108 ft) long and 2.7 m (8.9 ft) wide, spanned Hanging Ditch and was part of medieval Manchester's defences. Hanging Bridge was probably obscured by housing in the 1770s as a result of Manchester's expansion. It was uncovered in 1880s, and again in the late 20th century, and is now on display in Manchester Cathedral's visitor centre.
Mamucium Below ground remains 0079 Castlefield, Manchester 53°28′29″N 2°15′12″W / 53.474744°N 2.253219°W / 53.474744; -2.253219 (Mamucium) A Roman fort was established on a sandstone bluff near a crossing over the River Medlock, along the line of the Roman road between Chester (Deva Victrix) and York (Eboracum); it was designed to garrison a cohort of 500 auxiliary soldiers. A civilian settlement (vicus) of traders and families grew up around the fort. In around 140, the fort was demolished and the civilian settlement was abandoned around the same time. The fort was rebuilt in 160 and the settlement was re-inhabited. It was abandoned by the mid-3rd century, although the fort was in use into the early 4th century. A partial reconstruction of the fort on the site is open to the public.
Nico Ditch Earthwork 017th–9th centuries Ashton-under-Lyne and Denton 53°27′11″N 2°23′59″W / 53.453083°N 2.399854°W / 53.453083; -2.399854 (Nico Ditch) Nico Ditch is an earthwork stretching from Ashton Moss in the east to Hough Moss in the west. According to legend, the ditch was dug in a single night as a defence against Viking invaders in 869–870. However, the U-shaped profile of the ditch indicates it was not defensive as it would most likely be V-shaped. It was probably used as an administrative boundary. The ditch is visible in sections, and in places is about 1.5 m (4.9 ft) deep and up to 4 m (13 ft) wide.
Peel Hall Waterlogged moat 0314th century Ashton New Road, Manchester 53°22′41″N 2°14′39″W / 53.377989°N 2.244301°W / 53.377989; -2.244301 (Peel Hall) In the mid 14th century, Sir John de Arderne built Peel Hall. The site is surrounded by a moat which is between 8 and 14 m (26 and 46 ft) wide and 1.2 m (3.9 ft) deep. Peel Hall was demolished in 1809 and replaced by a farmhouse on the same site, which was demolished in 1975.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Castleshaw Roman fort Below ground remains 0179 Castleshaw, Saddleworth 53°35′00″N 2°00′06″W / 53.583244°N 2.001737°W / 53.583244; -2.001737 (Castleshaw Roman fort) In 79, a fort was established at Castleshaw by the Romans, for a garrison of 500 auxiliary soldiers, as part of the frontier defences along the road between Chester (Deva Victrix) and York (Eboracum). It was slighted in 90, but a smaller fort – or fortlet – was built on the site in 105, designed for a garrison of less than 100. A civilian settlement (vicus), made up of traders and hangers on of the soldiers, grew around the fort in the 2nd century. The fortlet was abandoned in the mid 120s when it was superseded by the neighbouring forts at Manchester and Slack. About the same time, the civilian settlement was abandoned. A series of ditches and earthworks was built to mark the site.
Saddleworth Bowl Barrow Earthworks 00Bronze Age Saddleworth 53°33′49″N 2°01′48″W / 53.563554°N 2.029973°W / 53.563554; -2.029973 (Saddleworth Bowl Barrow) The barrow is oval shaped and measures 17 m (19 yd) by 18 m (20 yd) and is 0.5 m (1.6 ft) high. The barrow has been excavated archaeologically, but has not revealed any signs of grave good or human remains. The site is in good condition.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Iron Age promontory fort Below ground remains 00500BC–200AD Salford 53°26′15″N 2°27′54″W / 53.437609°N 2.465123°W / 53.437609; -2.465123 (Salford Iron Age fort) The promontory fort is surrounded by two ditches. Inside the fort are four circular structures that are probably industrial areas and livestock enclosures. The Cheshire Very Coarse Pottery (VCP) found on the site is the only evidence of a late prehistoric pottery industry in Greater Manchester.
Worsley Delph Brick structure 011759 Swinton 53°30′03″N 2°22′45″W / 53.500795°N 2.379195°W / 53.500795; -2.379195 (Worsley Delph) In 1759, construction began on a system of underground canals; they provided a route between Worsley Colliery and the Bridgewater Canal for the coal the colliery produced. The canals were used for this purpose until 1887 and closed shortly after the last coal pit in the area in 1968.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Brown Low Earthworks 00Bronze Age Ludworth, Hazel Grove 53°24′54″N 2°01′04″W / 53.414871°N 2.01768°W / 53.414871; -2.01768 (Brown Low) Brown Low is a bowl barrow, 25.5 m (84 ft) in diameter and 2 m (6.6 ft) high. The site is covered in turf, and two hollows on the barrow are from an 1809 excavation.
Cairn Mound of stones 01Bronze Age Ludworth, Hazel Grove 53°22′55″N 2°01′13″W / 53.381878°N 2.020223°W / 53.381878; -2.020223 (Ludworth cairn) The late Bronze Age cairn is 12 m (39 ft) in diameter and 0.4 m (1.3 ft) high. There is a series of chambers and cremation cists. Due to its position on a knoll on Mellor Moor, it is highly visible.
Marple Aqueduct Aqueduct 051801 Marple 53°24′25″N 2°04′02″W / 53.407032°N 2.067323°W / 53.407032; -2.067323 (Marple Aqueduct) The Marple Aqueduct was built between 1794 and 1801 to carry the Peak Forest Canal over the River Goyt. The aqueduct is still in use for pleasure craft.
Oldknows Limekilns Lime kilns 041797 Marple 53°23′34″N 2°03′21″W / 53.392655°N 2.05572°W / 53.392655; -2.05572 (Oldknow Limekilns) Between 1797 and 1800, Samuel Oldknow built three lime kilns on the east side of the Peak Forest Canal. The kilns are 11 m (36 ft) deep and were built into the hillside. The site operated into the 20th century, and the remaining walling of the kilns is protected as a Grade II listed building.
Peel Moat Dry moat 02Medieval Heaton Moor, Stockport 53°25′43″N 2°11′18″W / 53.428747°N 2.188373°W / 53.428747; -2.188373 (Peel Moat) The dried-up, rectangular moat surrounds the site of a square-shaped fortified tower. There are no above ground remains of the tower, but it was situated on an area of land 29 m (95 ft) square, with the surrounding moat measuring between 5.5 m (18 ft) and 10 m (33 ft) wide.
Torkington Moat Water-logged moat 03Medieval Torkington, Stockport 53°23′06″N 2°05′28″W / 53.384902°N 2.091045°W / 53.384902; -2.091045 (Torkington Moat) The moat in Torkington surrounds the site of the manor house that was first built in 1350. The 1.6 m (5.2 ft) deep moat is between 8 and 20 m (26 and 66 ft) wide, and forms the perimeter of a 46 m (151 ft) by 43 m (141 ft) island. Torkington Hall replaced the medieval manor house in the early 17th century.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Buckton Castle Below ground remains 011180s Carrbrook 53°30′40″N 2°00′58″W / 53.511059°N 2.016212°W / 53.511059; -2.016212 (Buckton Castle) Buckton Castle is an enclosure castle probably built by the earls of Chester in the 12th century. It may have been constructed to guard the Longdendale Valley. The castle was first referred to in 1360, when it was in a ruinous state. The castle is circular, measuring 35 m (115 ft) and 45 m (148 ft) along the axes, and is surrounded by a 10 m (33 ft) wide and 6 m (20 ft) deep ditch. Buckton Castle has been damaged by 18th century treasure hunters and later 19th and 20th century quarrying.
Cairn Mound of stones 00Bronze Age Stalybridge 53°28′44″N 2°01′06″W / 53.478768°N 2.018419°W / 53.478768; -2.018419 (Stalybridge Cairn) The turf covered round cairn is situated on top of a hill, and consists of a mound of stones with a flat top. It is 1 m (3.3 ft) high and 16 m (52 ft) in diameter, although the southern edge has been destroyed. The site has been altered in modern period by the addition of a dry stone wall and a trigonometrical pillar.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Watch Hill Castle Earthworks Probable 12th century Bowdon 53°22′12″N 2°22′44″W / 53.369862°N 2.378858°W / 53.369862; -2.378858 (Watch Hill Castle) The castle is a motte-and-bailey, consisting of a conical mound (motte) 40 m (130 ft) in diameter and 17 m (56 ft) high, surrounded by a triangular lower enclosure (bailey) covering 2,400 square metres (0.59 acres). It probably belonged to Hamon de Massey, a baron who owned several manors locally, inlcluding those of Baguley, Bowdon, Dunham, and Hale. The structure had fallen into disuse by the 13th century.


Name Remains Date Location Description Ref(s)
Astley Green Colliery Mining site k1908 Astley 53°29′43″N 2°26′41″W / 53.495311°N 2.444649°W / 53.495311; -2.444649 (Astley Green Colliery) The Pilkington Colliery Company began construction of the colliery in 1908, and the site opened for coal production in 1912. The colliery was closed in 1970 and is now Astley Green Colliery Museum. Most of the buildings associated with the colliery have been destroyed as has one of the mine shafts.
Cross base Cross base aMedieval Junction of Green Lane, Standish Wood Lane and Beech Walk, Standish 53°34′49″N 2°39′43″W / 53.580335°N 2.662006°W / 53.580335; -2.662006 (Cross base) The stone cross was one of four known crosses that marked the medieval route from Wigan to Chorley. The cross base is no longer in its original place, having been moved when the road was widened.
Cross base Cross base bMedieval Green Lane, Standish 53°34′52″N 2°39′38″W / 53.581062°N 2.660506°W / 53.581062; -2.660506 (Cross base) The stone cross was one of four known crosses that marked the medieval route from Wigan to Chorley. It is protected as a Grade II listed building.
Cross base Cross base cMedieval Standish Wood Lane, Standish 53°34′25″N 2°39′38″W / 53.573511°N 2.66054°W / 53.573511; -2.66054 (Cross base) The stone cross was one of four known crosses that marked the medieval route from Wigan to Chorley.
Gidlow Hall Standing building h1574 Aspull 53°33′31″N 2°33′59″W / 53.558532°N 2.566397°W / 53.558532; -2.566397 (Gidlow Hall) The present structure dates from around 1574, although it is thought to have replaced an earlier building. In 1840, the hall was rebuilt in the Gothic Revival style. Gidlow Hall is protected as a Grade II listed building.
The Great Haigh Sough Portal Brick drainage i1653 Haigh 53°33′33″N 2°37′03″W / 53.559088°N 2.617436°W / 53.559088; -2.617436 (Haigh Sough drainage) Between 1653 and 1670, the Haigh Sough drainage system was under construction; its purpose was to drain the local collieries. The system extends for 936 m (3,071 ft) and has only one entrance. It was in use until 1929 and the entrance is now covered by a steel grille to prevent access.
Mab's Cross Stub of stone cross f13th century Standishgate, Wigan 53°33′04″N 2°37′34″W / 53.551132°N 2.626076°W / 53.551132; -2.626076 (Mab's Cross) Mab's Cross was one of four known crosses that marked the medieval route from Wigan to Chorley. In 1922, the cross was moved from its original position when the road was widened and is protected as a Grade II* listed building.
Standish Market Cross Stone cross dMedieval Market place, Standish 53°35′12″N 2°39′38″W / 53.586545°N 2.660592°W / 53.586545; -2.660592 (Standish Market Cross) The base of the stone cross is medieval, but the cross shaft is modern. It is protected as a Grade II listed building.
Moat of Moat House Dried-up moat j18th century Haigh 53°34′36″N 2°36′13″W / 53.576598°N 2.603644°W / 53.576598; -2.603644 (Moat House) All that remains is a dried-up square moat surrounding the 18th-century Moat House.
Morleys Hall Standing building eMedieval Astley 53°29′20″N 2°28′04″W / 53.489019°N 2.467796°W / 53.489019; -2.467796 (Morleys Hall) The current hall was built in the 19th century, however some 16th and 17th century timber framing is incorporated into the structure. In 1641, it was the home of Ambrose Barlow. The site is surrounded by a 12–15 m (39–49 ft) wide and 3 m (9.8 ft) deep waterlogged medieval moat, and Morleys Hall is a Grade II* listed building.
New Hall moated site Moat g16th century Astley, Tyldesley 53°30′21″N 2°27′12″W / 53.505706°N 2.453352°W / 53.505706; -2.453352 (New Hall) The moat surrounds the site of the original medieval building, which was replaced a by a post-medieval farmhouse. The moat is filled with water, however the ruined farmhouse is not part of the scheduled monument.
Winstanley Hall Standing building h1560s Winstanley 53°31′21″N 2°41′14″W / 53.522389°N 2.68735°W / 53.522389; -2.68735 (Winstanley Hall) Winstanley hall was built in the 1560s for the Winstanley family of Wigan, who were Lords of the Manor. It is linked with the neighbouring halls of Bispham Hall (built in 1573), Birchley Hall (1594), and Hacking Hall (1607). Winstanley Hall was extended in the 17th and 18th centuries, and further work was done in the 19th century including work by architect Lewis Wyatt in the Jacobean style. The building is currently in a decayed state, and lies unoccupied. It is also a Grade II* listed building.
Ringley old bridge
Ringley Old Bridge in Ringley

Affetside Cross
Affetside Cross replaced an earlier medieval cross

Radcliffe tower hdr
The standing remains of Radcliffe Tower

Baguley Hall
The 14th-century Baguley Hall, in Baguley is also a Grade I listed building

Clayton Hall in 2005
Clayton Hall, in Clayton is also a Grade II* listed building

A reconstructed section of the wall of Mamucium fort

Hanging Bridge 1892
Hanging Bridge was excavated in 1892

Looking west along Nico Ditch, near Levenshulme

Castleshaw plan 1752
A plan of Castleshaw drawn by Thomas Percival in 1752 showing the fort and the later fortlet

Marple Aqueduct 2003
The Marple Aqueduct crossing the River Goyt

View of Buckton Castle from below
View of Buckton Castle from below

Astley Green Colliery's pithead, viewed from across the Bridgewater Canal

Winstanley Hall 2006
Winstanley Hall, a Tudor house, is also a Grade II* listed building

Mab's Cross 2005
Mab's Cross is a Grade II* listed building

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