Deserted villages and Civil War earthwork


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Date of most recent amendment:


Ordnance survey map of Deserted villages and Civil War earthwork
© 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.

Aylesbury Vale (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SP 79715 15818, SP 80353 15842

Reasons for Designation

Villages were key components of Medieval rural life. Well-preserved deserted villages, such as these at Quarrendon, are archaeologically important because the Medieval remains have not been disturbed or damaged by later settlement. Whilst desertion is often associated with the Black Death, this monument is interpreted as exhibiting two phases of "desertion", the first when the location of the village shifted. The monument is therefore important not only as a result of its good state of preservation but also because of the information it contains for more general settlement studies. In addition, Quarrendon contains a Civil War earthwork. This is one of the most striking known examples of Royalist fieldworks and is situated on the site of the so-called Battle of Aylesbury (1642).


The monument comprises two deserted village sites. The village sites are considered to represent a single medieval settlement which shifted, during the medieval period, to a more suitable location. The less substantial of the two village sites lies to the west of the now ruined Church Farm and comprises house platforms and a trackway running east-west across the field (under pasture). In the west of the field is a large flat area divided by a broad street which may be a penning area with a droveway. To the east is the second village site (SP80511583) to which the original settlement is considered to have migrated. This site was probably depopulated by 1485. The earthworks of streets and houses are clear and represent a nucleated village covering some 25 acres, currently under permanent pasture. The pattern of streets and crofts can be seen to radiate from a central pond and mill while the sunken main street can be clearly seen, ascending the hill from the manor in the west. Later in date is the Civil War earthwork (SP80621562), one of the most striking examples of Royalist earthworks situated on the site of the so-called Battle of Aylesbury (1642).

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
The Victoria History of the County of Buckinghamshire, (1915), 100-102
The Victoria History of the County of Buckinghamshire, (1915), 100
Allcroft, A H, Earthworks of England, (1908), 604
Beresford, MW, Hurst, JG, Deserted Medieval Villages , (1971), 64,184
Beresford, MW, Hurst, JG, Deserted Medieval Villages , (1971), 64,184
Beresford, MW, St Joseph, JK, Medieval England: An Aerial Survey (1958), (1958), 57,116
Chambers, E K, Sir Henry Lee, (1936), 12-15
Royal Commission on Historical Monuments, , An Inventory of Historic Monuments in Buckinghamshire, (1912), 273
Royal Commission on Historical Monuments, , An Inventory of Historic Monuments in Buckinghamshire, (1912), 273
in CAS file 0407, Hurst J G, MS Notes on Quarrendon,
Ordnance Survey , Ordnance Survey Archaeological Records SP 81 NW 8,
Ordnance Survey, Ordnance Survey Archaeological Record SP 71 NE 12,


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.

End of official listing

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