Lynchets S of Stavordale Wood


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


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

Dorset (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SY 56422 84584


Part of a medieval field system 750m south-west of West Farm.

Reasons for Designation

The distinctive medieval strips fields were produced by areas of unploughed land being left between allotments and the shape was determined by the action of ploughing which always turned the soil to the right and thus produced an undulating S-shape. The size of the strips was roughly an acre (0.405ha) which represented a day's work with a plough and the length was determined by the distance an ox team could plough before needing a rest, a furlong (201.2m). Along particularly steep slopes this medieval cultivation techniques produced distinctive strips separated by often steep scarp slopes called lynchets ultimately producing more level cultivation terraces. The part of the medieval field system 750m south west of West Farm survives well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating t its construction, development, social organisation, agricultural practices and cultivation techniques and overall landscape context.


See Details.


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 13 January 2016. This 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.

This monument includes part of a medieval field system situated on the steep south facing slopes of a coastal ridge overlooking Cowards Lake and the sea at the northern end of Chesil Beach. The part of the field system survives as an extensive series of parallel and narrow lynchets which follow the contours of the hillside. The lynchets measure up to 3m high and the cultivation terraces created behind these vary in width from 6m up to 25m wide.


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

Legacy System number:
DO 383
Legacy System:


PastScape Monument No:-450555


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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