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Earthworks S of Tadhill Farm

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: Earthworks S of Tadhill Farm

List entry Number: 1006169

Location

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

County: Somerset

District: Mendip

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Downhead

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 23-Feb-1962

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: SO 335

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

Earthworks of an Iron Age defended settlement 280m south of Upper Tadhill Farm.

Reasons for Designation

During the Iron Age a variety of different types of settlement were constructed and occupied in south western England. At the top of the settlement hierarchy were hillforts built in prominent locations. In addition to these a group of smaller sites, known as defended settlements, were also constructed. Some of these were located on hilltops, others in less prominent positions. They are generally smaller than the hillforts, sometimes with an enclosed area of less than 1ha. The enclosing defences were of earthen construction. Univallate sites have a single bank and ditch, multivallate sites more than one. At some sites these earthen ramparts represent a second phase of defence, the first having been a timber fence or palisade. Where excavated, evidence of stone- or timber-built houses has been found within the enclosures, which, in contrast to the hillfort sites, would have been occupied by small communities, perhaps no more than a single family group. Defended settlements are a rare monument type. They were an important element of the settlement pattern, particularly in the upland areas of south western England, and are integral to any study of the developing use of fortified settlements during this period. The Iron Age defended settlement 280m south of Upper Tadhill Farm survives comparatively well with complex earthworks and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, function, date, longevity, possible re-use, agricultural practices, domestic arrangements, territorial and strategic significance and overall landscape context.

History

See Details.

Details

This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 17 August 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 an Iron Age defended settlement situated on a north east facing slope within the Mendip Hills overlooking the valleys of several un-named streams. The settlement survives as a roughly oval enclosure measuring approximately 68m long by 50m wide defined by a continuous ditch with partial counterscarp and inner banks and a simple causewayed gap entrance to the east. The western side of the enclosure has a roughly rectangular raised platform with traces of a bank around three of its sides and the eastern portion is at a lower level with a substantial northern bank which runs up and over the raised platform. The southern enclosure bank is lower and cut by a later roughly circular feature. To the east beyond the rampart are a track and a possible yard area. Partial excavations in 1961 revealed a silted V-shaped ditch cut into the bedrock in places with a second partially silted up U-shaped ditch beneath the bank. Charcoal fragments and flint objects were scattered throughout both ditch fills. Aerial photographs reveal that part of the interior also contains ridge and furrow but since this continues beyond the earthworks it appears to post date the enclosure. It is known locally as ‘Dinies Camp’. It was recorded by Colt-Hoare in the 19th century. Documentary references include a mention in the 1515 survey of Glastonbury Abbey holdings where it is referred to as ‘Warehanenbergh’ and the same name appears on the Mells charter of 942.

Selected Sources

Other
PastScape Monument No:-200178

National Grid Reference: ST 67634 45810

Map

Map
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End of official listing