Hall's Close: a ringwork and bailey 100m west of Kentend Farm


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
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Ordnance survey map of Hall's Close: a ringwork and bailey 100m west of Kentend Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)
Ashton Keynes
National Grid Reference:

Reasons for Designation

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 Hall's Close site survives well and has considerable potential for the recovery of archaeological remains. The importance of the monument is enhanced by the likelihood of the survival of below-ground waterlogged and organic remains, as a result of its location on level ground adjacent to a tributary of the River Thames. Such evidence will provide a detailed insight into the economy of the people who inhabited the site and the environment in which they lived.


The monument includes a ringwork and bailey set on level ground immediately north of a tributary of the River Thames. The ringwork comprises a raised platform 0.5m above ground level and 50m across defined by a low inner bank and a broad ditch 10m wide and 1m deep. To the west of the ringwork is a level bailey, again defined by bank and ditch, the bank standing to a maximum height of c.1m. Remains of an additional outer bank can be traced in fields immediately south of the southern arm of the ditch. East of the ringwork is a further extension of the bailey. This appears to have been reduced by cultivation although the ditch can still be traced as a low earthwork running NNW-SSE. It survives to a width of c.3m and is 0.2m deep. The moat surrounding the ringwork was fed by a channel linking the monument with a tributary of the River Thames. This can be traced in a field south of the ringwork as a linear feature c.4m wide and 0.3m deep. The site was partially excavated by a local, Gp Cpt Knocker, in 1959. This revealed a dry stone wall set in the bank of the ringwork and a clay-lined ditch. Finds of pottery and metalwork, believed to be contemporary with the monument, were recovered.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.


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

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Books and journals
'Wiltshire Archaeological Magazine' in Wiltshire Archaeological Magazine, , Vol. 49, (1942)
'Medieval Archaeology' in Medieval Archaeology, ()


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.

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