© 2015 Cambridge University Press. A simple geometry that exhibits near motion trapping is tested experimentally, along with perturbed versions of the structure. The motion of the freely floating structure and the surrounding wave field is tracked and the near-motion-trapped mode is found, characterised by a slowly decaying heave motion with very small linear radiation of energy. It is found that the latter property is a better discriminator of the perturbed geometries as viscous damping masks fine differences in radiation damping as far as the motion of the structure is concerned. The magnitude of this viscous damping is reasonably well predicted by a simple Stokes oscillatory boundary layer analysis.