Cross dyke on St Roche's Hill, 410m and 425m north east of The Trundle hillfort

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018036

Date first listed: 27-Apr-1998

Map

Ordnance survey map of Cross dyke on St Roche's Hill, 410m and 425m north east of The Trundle hillfort
© 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: West Sussex

District: Chichester (District Authority)

Parish: Singleton

National Park: SOUTH DOWNS

National Grid Reference: SU 87918 11442, SU 88061 11370

Summary

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 dyke 410m and 425m north east of The Trundle hillfort survives comparatively well, despite some subsequent disturbance, and will contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed. The cross dyke forms part of a group of broadly contemporary monuments situated on and around St Roche's Hill, providing evidence for the relationship between settlement and land division in this area of downland during the later prehistoric period.

History

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

Details

The monument, which falls into two separate areas, includes a north west-south east aligned cross dyke constructed across a chalk ridge projecting to the north east from St Roche's Hill, which forms part of the Sussex Downs. The 285m long cross dyke has a ditch up to about 5m wide and 1m deep, flanked to the north by a bank up to 8m wide and 0.5m high. A short section of the earthwork has been partly levelled by a later track, although the ditch will survive here as a buried feature. Towards the north western end of the dyke, a 40m long section of the earthworks has been completely levelled and any surviving buried features disturbed by the construction of the modern road, car park and Goodwood race course, and this area is therefore not included in the scheduling. A short stretch of the dyke west of the Goodwood-Charlton road has been partly levelled by past ploughing but survives as a slight earthwork and is clearly visible as a cropmark from higher ground. The earthworks gradually fade out to the north west and south east as the ground slopes away. The modern fence which crosses the monument is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it 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: 31203

Legacy System: RSM

End of official listing