Ludgershall Castle, a medieval ringwork and castle, Ludgershall


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1009912

Date first listed: 09-Oct-1981

Date of most recent amendment: 26-Jun-1990


Ordnance survey map of Ludgershall Castle, a medieval ringwork and castle, Ludgershall
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Ludgershall

National Grid Reference: SU 26387 51187


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

The most complete and extensive survival of chalk downland archaeological remains in central southern England occurs on Salisbury Plain, particularly in those areas lying within the Salisbury Plain Training Area. These remains represent one of the few extant archaeological "landscapes" in Britain and are considered to be of special significance because they differ in character from those in other areas with comparable levels of preservation. Individual sites on Salisbury Plain are seen as being additionally important because the evidence of their direct association with each other survives so well.

Ringworks are medieval fortifications built and occupied from the late Anglo-Saxon period to the later 12th century. They comprised a small defended area containing buildings which was surrounded or partly surrounded by a substantial ditch and a bank surmounted by a timber palisade or, rarely, a stone wall. Occasionally a more lightly defended embanked enclosure, the bailey, adjoined the ringwork. Ringworks acted as strongholds for military operations and in some cases as defended aristocratic or manorial settlements. They are rare nationally with only 200 recorded examples and less than 60 with baileys. As such, and as one of a limited number and very restricted range of Anglo-Saxon and Norman fortifications, ringworks are of particular significance to our understanding of the period.

The significance of Ludgershall Castle is enhanced by its royal associations which are well attested by documentary evidence, and by its association with surviving Medieval town defences.


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


The monument includes Ludgershall Castle, an earthwork castle comprising a ringwork and bailey with masonry internal buildings, and an adjoining length of the Medieval town defences. Partial excavation of the castle in the 1960s revealed mid 12th century timber buildings and defences. These were superseded by flint and mortar buildings in the 13th-14th centuries, the remains of some of which still survive as standing structures. The castle has close royal associations.

The modern farmhouse and its associated farm buildings, together with the police cottages and station, are excluded from the scheduling although the ground below them is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 10 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: 10070

Legacy System: RSM


Trust for Wessex Archaeology, (1987)
Wiltshire Library & Museum Service, (1987)

End of official listing