Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1005677
Date first listed: 03-Mar-1927
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference: SU 14322 38290
Hilltop enclosure called Ogbury.
Reasons for Designation
Hilltop enclosures are defined as sub-rectangular or elongated areas of ground, usually between 10ha and 40ha in size, situated on hilltops or plateaux and surrounded by slight univallate earthworks. They date to between the Bronze Age and Early Iron Age (eighth-fifth centuries BC) and are usually interpreted as stock enclosures or sites where agricultural produce was stored. Many examples of hilltop enclosures may have developed into more strongly defended sites later in the Iron Age period and are therefore often difficult to recognise in their original form. The earthworks generally consist of a bank separated from an external ditch by a level berm. Access to the interior was generally provided by two or three entrances which consisted of simple gaps in the rampart. Evidence for internal features is largely dependent on excavation, and to date this has included large areas of sparsely scattered features including post and stakeholes, hearths and pits. Rectangular or square buildings are also evident; these are generally defined by between four and six postholes and are thought to have supported raised granaries. Hilltop enclosures are rare, with between 25 and 30 examples recorded nationally. A greater number may exist but these could have been developed into hillforts later in the Iron Age and could only be confirmed by detailed survey or excavation. The majority of known examples are located in two regions, on the chalk downland of Wessex and Sussex and in the Cotswolds. More scattered examples are found in north-east Oxfordshire and north Northamptonshire. This class of monument has not been recorded outside England. In view of the rarity of hilltop enclosures and their importance in understanding the transition between Bronze Age and Iron Age communities, all examples with surviving archaeological remains are important. The hilltop enclosure called Ogbury survives well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, function, social, economic and territorial significance, agricultural practices, domestic arrangements and overall landscape context.
This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 25 June 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. As such they do not yet have the full descriptions of their modernised counterparts available. Please contact us if you would like further information.
This monument includes a hilltop enclosure situated on the summit of the western tip of a prominent ridge between two dry valleys overlooking the valley of the River Avon. The hilltop enclosure survives as a roughly heart shaped enclosure covering approximately 25ha. It is defined by a single rampart bank which survives differentially, but completely throughout the circuit and is at its best to the north where it is up to 3.9m high externally and 0.9m high internally, beyond which is a completely buried ditch. The interior contains traces of an extensive field system of rectangular fields which are visible on aerial photographs. The hilltop enclosure appears on the 1773 map by Andrews and Dury and a small rectangular internal structure was partly excavated by Colt Hoare although nothing notable was recorded. Over the years a Neolithic flint scraper and Iron Age pottery sherds have been discovered as stray surface finds.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: WI 186
Legacy System: RSM - OCN
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