Section of the north Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch running into the northern edge of Shilcott Wood on the Ditchley Estate

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1014578

Date first listed: 26-Jul-1995

Date of most recent amendment: 15-May-1996

Map

Ordnance survey map of Section of the north Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch running into the northern edge of Shilcott Wood on the Ditchley Estate
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

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

County: Oxfordshire

District: West Oxfordshire (District Authority)

Parish: Spelsbury

National Grid Reference: SP 37151 21816

Summary

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

Reasons for Designation

Linear boundaries are substantial earthwork features comprising single or multiple ditches and banks which may extend over distances varying between less than 1km to over 10km. They survive as earthworks or as linear features visible as cropmarks on aerial photographs or as a combination of both. The evidence of excavation and study of associated monuments demonstrate that their construction spans the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although they may have been re-used later. The scale of many linear boundaries has been taken to indicate that they were constructed by large social groups and were used to mark important boundaries in the landscape; their impressive scale displaying the corporate prestige of their builders. They would have been powerful symbols, often with religious associations, used to define and order the territorial holdings of those groups who constructed them. Linear earthworks are of considerable importance for the analysis of settlement and land use in the Bronze Age; all well preserved examples will normally merit statutory protection.

The section of Grim's Ditch running into the northern edge of Shilcott Wood survives well as an upstanding earthwork feature and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction and the landscape in which it was built.

History

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

Details

The monument includes a c.750m long section of the north Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch running from WSW-ENE into the northern edge of Shilcott Wood on the Ditchley Estate. The western 350m of this section has been reduced by cultivation but survives as a low bank and buried ditch visible on aerial photographs. The section to the east, within Shilcott Wood, survives as a rampart bank 6m wide and up to 1.7m high. To the north of this lies a 4m wide berm and a partially infilled ditch up to 12m wide. This ditch is visible as an open feature 0.5m deep where it is not obscured by vegetation. This section forms part of an outer circuit of Grim's Ditch, roughly 1km north of the main ditch line. Excluded from the scheduling are the post and wire fence boundaries and the metalled road surfaces which cross it, although the ground beneath all of these features 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.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number: 21858

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Copeland, T, 'Oxoniensia' in The North Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch : A Fieldwork Survey, (1984), 280
Crawford, O G S, 'Antiquity' in The North Oxfordshire Grim's Ditch, , Vol. IV, 15, (1930)
Other
Title: Ordnance Survey 1:10000 Series Source Date: Author: Publisher: Surveyor: SP

End of official listing