Romano-British bloomery in Pippingford Park, 775m north-east of Pippingford House

Overview

Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
1002228
Date first listed:
30-Apr-1976
Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Map

Ordnance survey map of Romano-British bloomery in Pippingford Park, 775m north-east of Pippingford House
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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Location

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.
County:
East Sussex
District:
Wealden (District Authority)
Parish:
Hartfield
National Grid Reference:
TQ 44590 31249

Reasons for Designation

Iron has been produced in England from at least 500 BC. The iron industry, spurred on by a succession of technological developments, has played a major part in the history of the country, its production and overall importance peaking with the Industrial Revolution. Iron ores occur in a variety of forms across England, giving rise to several different extraction techniques and structures. Ore was originally smelted into iron in small, relatively low-temperature furnaces known as bloomeries. These were replaced from the 16th century by blast furnaces. The Weald was the main iron producing region of Britain during the Roman period. The geology of sands and clays yielded iron ore, along with stone and brick to build furnaces, whilst the woodland provided fuel, and streams and rivers provided water power. An iron industry was already well-established in the region prior to the Roman Conquest. However in the first and second centuries further resources were put into increasing production and setting up new iron bloomeries. The 'Classis Britannica' or Romano-British Fleet took a significant role in managing many iron smelting sites and was particularly influential within the local economy. The Romano-British bloomery in Pippingford Park is a Romano-British iron working site that survives well. It is a good example and forms part of the Wealden iron mining and smelting landscape. The survival of part of a shaft furnace on the site is of particular interest.

Details

The monument includes a Romano-British bloomery dating to the 1st century AD surviving as earthworks and buried archaeological remains. It is situated near the bottom of a valley on a south facing slope overlooking Cinder Arch Lake in Pippingford Park, Ashdown Forest, on the High Weald. The site includes an iron smelting shaft furnace built on a platform above the lake as well as an ore roasting hearth, a domestic hearth and a heap of tap slag. The features are partly visible as earthworks forming a shelf-like depression with another smaller depression in the centre, partly filled with lumps of ironstone. The slag heap is to the south. The site was partially excavated between 1969 and 1970 revealing the lower part of the shaft furnace. A small 1st century bronze brooch and pottery dating to the Claudian-Neronian period were recovered. The monument excludes all modern signs and notices, as well as the posts marking the site, but the ground beneath these features is included.

Sources: East Sussex HER MES5248. NMR TQ43SE66. PastScape 972867. Crossley, D. 1991. English Heritage Monuments Protection Programme. Industrial Monuments: The Iron and Steel Industries. Step 3 report. Version O (Site Assessment 68). Hodgkinson, J. 2002. IRON - A Once Great Wealden Industry. Wealden Iron Research Group. Retrieved from http://www.wealdeniron.org.uk/hist.htm on 8th March 2010.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number:
ES 400
Legacy System:
RSM - OCN

Legal

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 Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

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