A section of a linear earthwork south west of Great Litchfield Down


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012039

Date first listed: 13-Nov-1995


Ordnance survey map of A section of a linear earthwork south west of Great Litchfield Down
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This copy shows the entry on 15-Dec-2018 at 11:06:51.


The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Hampshire

District: Basingstoke and Deane (District Authority)

Parish: Burghclere

County: Hampshire

District: Basingstoke and Deane (District Authority)

Parish: Litchfield and Woodcott

National Grid Reference: SU 46596 55386


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

Reasons for Designation

Linear boundaries are substantial earthwork features comprising single or multiple ditches and banks which may extend over distances varying between less than 1km to over 10km. They survive as earthworks or as linear features visible as cropmarks on aerial photographs or as a combination of both. The evidence of excavation and study of associated monuments demonstrate that their construction spans the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although they may have been re-used later. The scale of many linear boundaries has been taken to indicate that they were constructed by large social groups and were used to mark important boundaries in the landscape; their impressive scale displaying the corporate prestige of their builders. They would have been powerful symbols, often with religious associations, used to define and order the territorial holdings of those groups who constructed them. Linear earthworks are of considerable importance for the analysis of settlement and land use in the Bronze Age; all well preserved examples will normally merit statutory protection.

Much of the archaeological landscape of the downs around Ladle Hill is preserved as earthworks or crop- or soil-marks, which together will provide a detailed understanding of the nature and development of agriculture and settlement on the north Hampshire downs. The linear earthwork south west of Great Litchfield Down forms part of the wider distribution of monuments of Bronze Age and later date on the downs. The earthwork will contain archaeological and environmental information relating to the construction and use of the monument.


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


The monument includes a section of an upstanding linear earthwork south west of Great Litchfield Down. Another section of this earthwork lies c.1.1km further to the north east and is the subject of a separate scheduling. Ascending the steep north side of a dry valley, the earthwork curves from south to NNE towards the scarp at the western edge of Great Litchfield Down, a distance of c.402m. The earthwork has been levelled and infilled by cultivation to the north and there is no known evidence that it extended beyond the dry valley to the south. The feature, which consists of a bank to the west of a ditch, has a maximum overall width of 9.5m. The bank rises to a maximum height of 0.4m above the surrounding ground surface and the ditch has a maximum depth of 0.6m. All fencing and associated posts are excluded from the scheduling but the ground beneath them is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 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: 25617

Legacy System: RSM

End of official listing