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


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1017709

Date first listed: 19-Mar-1998


Ordnance survey map of Two cross dykes 580m and 610m north east of Wood Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1017709 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 19-Dec-2018 at 01:30:55.


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

District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Mere

National Grid Reference: ST 80752 34072, ST 80755 33994


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.


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


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

Legacy System number: 26863

Legacy System: RSM

End of official listing