Section of Roman road 760m south west of Lower Barn Farm


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


Ordnance survey map of Section of Roman road 760m south west of Lower Barn Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)
Longbridge Deverill
Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)
Maiden Bradley with Yarnfield
National Grid Reference:
ST 82768 39999

Reasons for Designation

Roman roads were artificially made-up routes introduced to Britain by the Roman army from c.AD 43. They facilitated both the conquest of the province and its subsequent administration. Their main purpose was to serve the Cursus Publicus, or Imperial mail service. Express messengers could travel up to 150 miles per day on the network of Roman roads throughout Britain and Europe, changing horses at wayside 'mutationes' (posting stations set every 8 miles on major roads) and stopping overnight at 'mansiones' (rest houses located every 20-25 miles). In addition, throughout the Roman period and later, Roman roads acted as commercial routes and became foci for settlement and industry. Mausolea were sometimes built flanking roads during the Roman period while, in the Anglian and medieval periods, Roman roads often served as property boundaries. Although a number of roads fell out of use soon after the withdrawal of Rome from the province in the fifth century AD, many have continued in use down to the present day and are consequently sealed beneath modern roads. On the basis of construction technique, two main types of Roman road are distinguishable. The first has widely spaced boundary ditches and a broad elaborate agger comprising several layers of graded materials. The second usually has drainage ditches and a narrow simple agger of two or three successive layers. In addition to ditches and construction pits flanking the sides of the road, features of Roman roads can include central stone ribs, kerbs and culverts, not all of which will necessarily be contemporary with the original construction of the road. With the exception of the extreme south- west of the country, Roman roads are widely distributed throughout England and extend into Wales and lowland Scotland. They are highly representative of the period of Roman administration and provide important evidence of Roman civil engineering skills as well as the pattern of Roman conquest and settlement. A high proportion of examples exhibiting good survival are considered to be worthy of protection.

The trackway to the south west of Lower Barn Farm is a well preserved section of Roman road which provides an important insight into the communications network in this area during the Roman period. It will contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the Roman occupation and the landscape of the area during this period. The use of this section of the road as a parish boundary shows that it was still a significant route some centuries after it was built.


The monument includes a section of Roman road situated 760m south west of Lower Barn Farm, on the north facing slope of Brimsdown Hill, the western end of a ridge of chalk to the north of the Wylye Valley. The road runs north-south for a length of approximately 350m, curving slightly as it rises to cross Brimsdown Hill. The road is represented by a cambered surface located upon an agger or bank 14m wide by 1.5m high. To the north the road is cut by a post-medieval quarry while to the south at the top of the slope a later cart track has deepened the road into a hollow way disturbing the earlier Roman remains. These sections to the north and south are not included in the scheduling. Abutting the road to the east is a post-medieval dewpond, 1.5m deep with banked edges 0.4m high. It is almost square measuring 34m from east to west and 30m from north to south. This is not included in the scheduling. The Roman road is likely to represent a section of the route from Bath to Poole. It forms the boundary of the parishes of Maiden Bradley with Yarnfield and Longbridge Deverill. All fenceposts are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them 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:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Margery, I D, Roman Roads in Britain, (1957), 107


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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