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Two cross dykes 580m and 610m north east of Wood Farm

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Two cross dykes 580m and 610m north east of Wood Farm

List entry Number: 1017709

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County:

District: Wiltshire

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: Mere

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 19-Mar-1998

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 26863

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

Reasons for Designation

Cross dykes are substantial linear earthworks typically between 0.2km and 1km long and comprising one or more ditches arranged beside and parallel to one or more banks. They generally occur in upland situations, running across ridges and spurs. They are recognised as earthworks or as cropmarks on aerial photographs, or as combinations of both. The evidence of excavation and analogy with associated monuments demonstrates that their construction spans the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although they may have been re-used later. Current information favours the view that they were used as territorial boundary markers, probably demarcating land allotment within communities, although they may also have been used as trackways, cattle droveways or defensive earthworks. Cross dykes are one of the few monument types which illustrate how land was divided up in the prehistoric period. They are of considerable importance for any analysis of settlement and land use in the Bronze Age. Very few have survived to the present day and hence all well- preserved examples are considered to be of national importance.

The cross dykes 580m and 610m north east of Wood Farm are well preserved examples of their class and form an integral part of the formalised later prehistoric landscape centred on Whitesheet Hill hillfort. In addition they will contain archaeological remains providing evidence for prehistoric landuse and environment.

History

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

Details

The monument, which lies within two areas, includes two cross dykes, which lie across a narrow downland spur 580m and 610m north east of Wood Farm. The dykes, which are aligned broadly east west, lie approximately 30m apart. The southern dyke has a prominent ditch with a bank on both sides of it, terminating abruptly at its eastern end on the steep slope which leads into Great Bottom. Its western end lies immediately below the crest of the ridge. The dyke has a maximum width of 23m and the maximum height difference between the top of the bank and the bottom of the ditch is 2.2m. The overall recorded length of the dyke is 90m. The northern dyke at its western end has a ditch with a bank on either side of it, that to the south of the ditch being wider. The dyke has a maximum width of 17m and a height difference between the bottom of the ditch and the top of the bank of 1.35m. On the crest of the ridge the dyke is cut by a trackway and, to the east of this, only a ditch with a slight northern bank is visible, the overall width being 12m. The overall recorded length of the dyke is 70m. All fence posts are excluded from the scheduling although the ground 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.

Selected Sources

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

National Grid Reference: ST 80752 34072, ST 80755 33994

Map

Map
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This copy shows the entry on 21-Nov-2017 at 12:59:42.

End of official listing