Earthwork enclosure 950m SSE of Manor Farm


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


Ordnance survey map of Earthwork enclosure 950m SSE of Manor Farm
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SU 11545 69368

Reasons for Designation

Earthen enclosures provide evidence of land use and agricultural practices in the prehistoric and Romano-British period, although later examples are also known. They were constructed as stock pens or as protected areas for crop growing and were sometimes subdivided to provide temporary accommodation for stock, farmers or herdsmen. The size and form of enclosures may vary considerably depending on their particular function. Their variation in form, longevity and their relationship to other monument classes, including extensive field systems, provide information on the diversity and social organisation and farming practices through the period of their use. Twelve examples are recorded in the Avebury area, which acted as a focus for ceremonial and ritual activity during at least the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age periods. Later the area was settled mostly by agricultural communities, with the area intensively farmed through to the medieval period and beyond. The enclosures in the Avebury area are central to understanding the character of this development. All surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

The enclosure 950m SSE of Manor Farm is known from part excavation and aerial photographs to survive buried below the present ground level and despite having been levelled by cultivation will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction and the landscape in which it was built.


The monument includes a roughly square earthwork enclosure situated 950m SSE of Manor Farm. The enclosure is situated near the bottom of a small east-west aligned dry valley on the edge of the chalk escarpment and overlooks the West Kennet Avenue to the west. Although the earthworks of the enclosure have been levelled by cultivation, earlier records and aerial photographs show that it originally had an earthen bank 4m wide and at least 0.7m high, enclosing an area roughly 75m square. Beyond the bank lies a 4m wide ditch which has become infilled over the years but is known to survive as a buried feature. A counter-scarp bank, now levelled, measures 2.5m in width and stood at least 0.6m high. A series of small internal earthworks and the original entrance are also known to have been located in the south west corner of the main enclosure. The site was partly excavated by Sir Richard Colt-Hoare in the early 1800s. This revealed evidence for the construction of the earthworks. Excluded from the scheduling is the post and wire fence which runs roughly east-west across the enclosure although the land beneath 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.

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Legacy System:


Books and journals
Colt-Hoare, R, 'Ancient Wiltshire' in Ancient Wiltshire, , Vol. 2, (1821), 94
Grinsell, L V, 'A HISTORY OF WILTSHIRE' in Earthwork Enclosures, , Vol. 1,1, (1957), 262
SU 16 NW 066, R.C.H.M.(E), A rectangular enclosure, (1974)
Title: SU 16 NW Source Date: 1961 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: 6" Series
Updated AVWHS Survey entry SU16NW 677, C.A.O., Roughly square enclosure, (1989)


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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