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145m section of the north Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch situated 200m west of Grimsdyke 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: 145m section of the north Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch situated 200m west of Grimsdyke Farm

List entry Number: 1012905


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

County: Oxfordshire

District: West Oxfordshire

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Kiddington with Asterleigh

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 09-Apr-1951

Date of most recent amendment: 04-Oct-1995

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 21849

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

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

Reasons for Designation

The north Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch is a series of discrete linear earthworks of Iron Age date which together make up at least one segmented circuit, situated between the valleys of the Rivers Evenlode, Glyme and Windrush in an area of the eastern Cotswolds. In recent years evidence for an outer concentric circuit has come to light, largely from the study of cropmarks visible on aerial photographs. The area enclosed by the inner circuit is 12 sq km and the outer circuit encloses between 60 and 70 sq km. The earthworks which define this area were only built in open country leaving apparent gaps in the areas previously forested. Where visible, the Grim's Ditch always includes a rampart of dumped earth and stone, a berm and outer ditch and, in places, a narrow palisade trench beyond. It is believed that, together, these components served to enclose and divide an area of land and provide control over access through the open country which existed between heavily forested areas. The ditch is Iron Age in date and provides evidence of how the landscape was managed and divided in the period immediately prior to the Roman Conquest. The high concentration of sites representing Iron Age ritual and agricultural activity which occur within the area defined by the ditch confirms the view that it served to define an area which was of particular significance to its builders. All sections surviving as visible earthworks, and sections identified by aerial photography which are integral to a general understanding of the nature and extent of Grim's Ditch, will normally merit statutory protection.

Despite reduction by cultivation, the section of Grim's Ditch west of Grimsdyke Farm will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction and the landscape in which it was built. This section occupies the north eastern corner of the ditch system.


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


The monument includes a short section of the north Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch situated 200m west of Grimsdyke Farm. The ditch runs from west to east down a gentle slope before forming the north eastern turn of the ditch system. Here it probably abutted the edge of a contemporary wood. This section of the monument includes a 5m wide rampart. This originally stood c.1.5m high but has been reduced by cultivation to a low stone spread visible as a slight rise in an arable field c.0.2m high. It is known from excavation and aerial photographs that a 1.5m wide berm lies to the north of this, separating the rampart from a 5.8m wide and 1.5m deep ditch. This ditch was originally open but it has become infilled over the years and now survives below the modern ploughsoil. From evidence recovered on other sections of the Grim's Ditch, it is known that a palisade trench 0.5m wide and c.0.2m deep is situated c.3.75m north of the outside edge of the ditch. This would have contained a wooden fence or palisade c.1m high which would have added to the defences and prevented cattle and other stock from falling into the ditch.

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.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Copeland, T, 'Oxoniensia' in The North Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch : A Fieldwork Survey, (1984), 289-
Harden, D B, 'Oxoniensia' in Excavations On The North Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch 1935-6, (1939), 77-
Title: Ordnance Survey 1st Edition Source Date: 1833 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: 6" Series
Vertical, R.C.H.M.(E), RAF SP$'SW; FAS 6125 / 12.038, (1840)

National Grid Reference: SP 40562 21575


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The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1012905 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 18-Dec-2017 at 01:27:32.

End of official listing