Cross dyke and hut platform on the summit of The Lawley, 100m south west of OS trig pillar.
- 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.
- Shropshire (Unitary Authority)
- National Grid Reference:
- SO 49439 97408
Reasons for Designation
Cross dykes are substantial linear earthworks typically between 0.2km and 1km
long and comprising one or more ditches arranged beside and parallel to one or
more banks. They generally occur in upland situations, running across ridges
and spurs. They are recognised as earthworks or as cropmarks on aerial
photographs, or as combinations of both. The evidence of excavation and
analogy with associated monuments demonstrates that their construction spans
the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although they may have been re-used
later. Current information favours the view that they were used as territorial
boundary markers, probably demarcating land allotment within communities,
although they may also have been used as trackways, cattle droveways or
defensive earthworks. Cross dykes are one of the few monument types which
illustrate how land was divided up in the prehistoric period. They are of
considerable importance for any analysis of settlement and land use in the
Bronze Age. Very few have survived to the present day and hence all well-
preserved examples are considered to be of national importance.
The cross dyke on the summit of The Lawley survives well and is a good example of its class. The interior of the site shows evidence of a hut platform and will contain archaeological evidence relating to the occupation of the site. Environmental evidence, important to an understanding of the landscape into which the site was built and functioned, will survive on the ancient landsurfaces sealed beneath the banks and in the ditch fills. The monument is one of two probably related sites on The Lawley and one of several such sites which occur in similar situations in this area of upland. Such monuments, when considered both singly and as a group, contribute valuable information pertaining to the density of settlement and the nature of land use of this area of upland during the Bronze Age and Iron Age.
The monument includes the remains of a cross dyke and a hut platform situated
on the summit of The Lawley, a north east to south west orientated ridge of
high ground. The earthworks include a well defined cross dyke, approximately
100m to the south west of the OS trig pillar. The dyke curves across the ridge
top from north west to south east as a well defined and partly rock cut ditch
6m wide and 1.2m deep. The ditch is flanked along its south west edge by a
bank 0.6m high and along its north east edge by a bank 0.9m high. The ditch
and banks extend for approximately 50m before fading out on the precipitous
side slopes of the hill. Extending south westwards, from the ends of the dyke,
the natural hillslope has been artificially steepened to create a boundary
scarp averaging 2m high, fading into the natural hillslope towards the OS trig
pillar. Access across the dyke is believed to have been around its southern
end. Towards the northern end of the site, scooped out of the south east
facing slope is a shallow oval platform measuring 11m by 7m and believed to be
the site of an early building.
MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 4 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
- Legacy System number:
- Legacy System:
OS card no SO49N28, Phillips, A S, (1979)
OS card no SO49NE28, Phillips, A S, (1979)
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