Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1004774
Date first listed: 18-Jul-1955
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This copy shows the entry on 12-Dec-2018 at 00:22:41.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference: ST 97669 21700
Pond called Wermere.
Reasons for Designation
Cranborne Chase is an area of chalkland well known for its high number, density and diversity of archaeological remains. These include a rare combination of Neolithic and Early Bronze Age sites, comprising one of the largest concentrations of burial monuments in England, the largest known cursus (a linear ritual monument) and a significant number and range of henge monuments (Late Neolithic ceremonial centres). Other important remains include a variety of enclosures, settlements, field systems and linear boundaries which date throughout prehistory and into the Romano-British and medieval periods. This high level of survival of archaeological remains is due largely to the later history of the Chase. Cranborne Chase formed a Royal Hunting Ground from at least Norman times, and much of the archaeological survival within the area resulted from associated laws controlling land-use which applied until 1830. The unique archaeological character of the Chase has attracted much attention over the years, notably during the later 19th century, by the pioneering work on the Chase of General Pitt-Rivers, Sir Richard Colt Hoare and Edward Cunnington, often regarded as the fathers of British archaeology. Archaeological investigations have continued throughout the 20th century and to the present day. Despite reduction in the height of the outer bank through cultivation the pond survives comparatively well and is important as both a long established land mark and also for its use to store much needed water in a chalk environment. It will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, maintenance, date, function, territorial and social significance, agricultural practices and overall landscape context.
This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 24 September 2015. 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 a pond situated on the summit of a wide flat topped chalk escarpment called Elcombe Down to the east of the prominent hill called Trow Down overlooking several steeply sided dry valleys. The pond survives as a roughly 21m diameter central roughly circular water filled hollow with an outer bank which encloses an oval area measuring approximately 58m long by 55m wide and is defined by a low spread bank with two possible entrances to the east and west. The date of this dew pond is not known and it has been attributed a prehistoric, Anglo-Saxon or medieval origin and some even suggest it is largely natural. It was used as a bound mark for Cranborne Chase in documents dated to 1280 and was named on a 17th century map. It is also known by the alternative name of ‘Lavermere’.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: WI 494
Legacy System: RSM - OCN
PastScape 210571; Wiltshire HER ST92SE403
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