Castle Hill earthwork


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013290

Date first listed: 14-Jul-1933

Date of most recent amendment: 12-Sep-1995


Ordnance survey map of Castle Hill earthwork
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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This copy shows the entry on 18-Nov-2018 at 07:48:02.


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

District: Isle of Wight (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Brighstone

National Grid Reference: SZ 40885 84081


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

Reasons for Designation

During the Iron Age a variety of different types of settlement were constructed and occupied in south-western England. At the top of the settlement hierarchy were hillforts built in prominent locations. In addition to these a group of smaller sites, known as defended settlements, were also constructed. Some of these were located on hilltops, others in less prominent positions. They are generally smaller than the hillforts, sometimes with an enclosed area of less than 1ha. The enclosing defences were of earthen construction. Univallate sites have a single bank and ditch, multivallate sites more than one. At some sites these earthen ramparts represent a second phase of defence, the first having been a timber fence or palisade. Where excavated, evidence of stone- or timber-built houses has been found within the enclosures, which, in contrast to the hillfort sites, would have been occupied by small communities, perhaps no more than a single family group. Defended settlements are a rare monument type. They were an important element of the settlement pattern, particularly in the upland areas of south-western England, and are integral to any study of the developing use of fortified settlements during this period. All well-preserved examples are likely to be identified as nationally important.

The earthwork known as `Castle Hill' survives well and is the only site of this type known on the Isle of Wight.


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


The monument includes Castle Hill earthwork which has been interpreted as a Bronze Age or more likely Iron Age defended settlement. It lies on a hilltop on the south western part of the Isle of Wight with extensive views over the coastal plain and sea to the south, and the downs to the north. The earthwork is roughly square and aligned slightly north west to south east. It has an internal area c.55m long and c.58m wide enclosed by a bank c.5m wide and c.0.3m high. Beyond this is a ditch c.5.75m wide and 0.5m deep and an outer bank c.10m wide and c.0.5m high. The monument does not appear to survive beyond the field boundary on its east side. The post and wire fence which forms the eastern boundary is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it is included.

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.

Legacy System number: 22063

Legacy System: RSM

End of official listing