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Medieval enclosure W of Newmarket Plantation

List Entry Summary

This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Medieval enclosure W of Newmarket Plantation

List entry Number: 1002206

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: East Sussex

District: Lewes

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Falmer

National Park: SOUTH DOWNS

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 17-Oct-1978

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM - OCN

UID: ES 460

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Stock enclosure on Loose Bottom, 1.2km south-east of Orchard Cottages.

Reasons for Designation

Stock enclosures of medieval and later date provided winter shelter and corralling for beasts ranging over open pasture. In south east England, they are to be found in relatively remote regions located some distance from the farmstead with which they were associated. They vary in size and shape and reflect local building techniques, styles and materials. They usually survive as a level area surrounded by low banks flanked by construction ditches. Some enclosures would have been further protected by timber fences and gates and smaller examples may have been roofed. Surviving largely in downland areas of less intensive modern land use, medieval and post-medieval stock enclosures provide evidence for pastoral practices in south east England which have left few other traces in the landscape. As a relatively rare monument type, those examples which survive well as upstanding monuments and/or which are documented by part excavation or contemporary records, are considered to merit protection.

The stock enclosure on Loose Bottom survives well and will contain archaeological and environmental information relating to its construction and use, as well as the landscape in which it was built.

History

See Details.

Details

This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 4 September 2014. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes a stock enclosure of probable medieval date, which survives as an earthwork denoted by a bank and ditch. It is situated at the foot of a steep north-west facing slope on a valley bottom near Newmarket Plantation in the South Downs. The valley sides rise steeply to the north-east, south-east and south-west.

The enclosure is curvilinear in form with an entrance in the north-west side. There are also small openings on the south-west and south-east sides, which may be the result of past damage or mutilation. The bank forming the enclosure is 3m wide and 0.4m high with an external ditch 3m wide and 0.4m deep.

In 1995, an archaeological survey of the area carried out by the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England (RCHME) identified a possible trench on the north side of the enclosure. This is likely to be the result of an unrecorded partial excavation in the past. Several sherds of Bronze Age pottery, as well as burnt flints and flint flakes, have been found in soil upcast from mole hills within the interior. This type of enclosure has traditionally been called a ‘valley-head entrenchment’. The location, at the foot of the valley, forms a natural driveway for corralling stock into the enclosure, which is likely to have been used in the medieval period to manage cattle or sheep.

Selected Sources

Other
East Sussex HER MES1369. NMR TQ30NE12. PastScape 401712.,

National Grid Reference: TQ 36533 08000

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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This copy shows the entry on 18-Dec-2017 at 10:34:04.

End of official listing