Iron Age enclosed settlement and part of a trackway 150m north east of the King Stone


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018402

Date first listed: 25-Nov-1999


Ordnance survey map of Iron Age enclosed settlement and part of a trackway 150m north east of the King Stone
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This copy shows the entry on 17-Nov-2018 at 06:24:18.


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

County: Warwickshire

District: Stratford-on-Avon (District Authority)

Parish: Long Compton

National Grid Reference: SP 29758 31008


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

Reasons for Designation

The size and form of Iron Age enclosed settlements vary considerably from single farmsteads up to large semi-urban oppida. Farmsteads are generally represented by curvilinear enclosures containing evidence of a small group of circular domestic buildings and associated agricultural structures. Where excavated, these sites are also found to contain storage pits for grain and other produce, evidence of an organised and efficient farming system. The surrounding enclosures would have provided protection against cattle rustling and tribal raiding. In central southern England, most enclosed Iron Age farmsteads are situated in areas which are now under intensive arable cultivation. As a result, although some examples survive with upstanding earthworks, the majority have been recorded as crop- and soil-marks appearing on aerial photographs.

The enclosed Iron Age farmstead settlement 150m north east of the King Stone is known from aerial photographs and part excavation to survive buried below the modern plough soil. It has been shown to contain archaeological remains relating to its construction, occupation and the landscape in which it was built. In addition to being a good example of its date and class, the settlement lies within a small area of the Oxfordshire Cotswolds containing examples of several rare forms of burial monument of differing dates, which appear to have acted as foci for ceremonial and ritual activity. This evidence of human activity within a single area over a period spanning several thousand years will provide important information on how human activity in the landscape has changed over time and how farming practices have been affected by both changing technology and needs. It will also provide information on the religious and social beliefs of those who occupied the site, and how they were affected by the physical remains of those who went before them.


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


The monument includes an Iron Age enclosed settlement site consisting of two ditched enclosures, pits and further features including part of a Late Bronze Age or Early Iron Age ditched trackway. The site lies 150m north east of the King Stone within the vicinity of the Rollright Stones prehistoric monument group on the Oxfordshire - Warwickshire border, the subject of a separate scheduling. The site lies on a slight but broad ridge aligned roughly east to west, along which trackways have run since prehistoric times. The settlement is no longer visible at ground level but survives buried below the present ground surface, and is clearly visible as cropmarks on aerial photographs. These marks are caused by the richer soil in ditch fills causing the crops to grow taller with darker shades of colour than the surrounding crop. The main enclosure is approximately 40m in diameter and is slightly oval in plan. The second enclosure is smaller, being only about 20m in diameter, and lies to the north west. A section of trackway runs from the west of the monument towards the main enclosure. The main enclosure was first noted by William Stukeley in 1743 when it was still visible as an upstanding earthwork. It was relocated from aerial photographs taken in 1961 which also showed the second enclosure for the first time. The main enclosure was subsequently partly excavated in 1982 as part of a wider project investigating the monuments of the area. This showed the enclosure to be surrounded by a rock-cut ditch with a stone wall on its inner side. This would have provided a formidable defence at the time and enclosed an area of approximately 0.26ha. Located within this enclosure were pits shown to have served as grain storage pits and at least two cess pits. The pits and posts extended outside the defended enclosure however, and may represent different phases of settlement related to changing levels of security felt by the inhabitants. Finds from the excavation included pottery from the local area and of a type believed to have originated at Droitwich in the West Midlands. An infant burial, animal skulls and fragments of animal bones were also found associated with several features in and around the enclosure. The second enclosure although not excavated is expected to include a similar range of features and finds. The trackway, also partly excavated in 1982, was shown to be probably earlier than the excavated section of the settlement. Ploughsoil of Iron Age date found surviving along its course represents all that remains of a once much more extensive field system. Excluded from the scheduling are all boundary fences, 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: 28200

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Lambrick, G, Rollright Stones, (1988)
WA 3800, SMRO, Site of Iron Age Trackway 200m NE of King Stone, (1995)
WA 5536, SMRO, Site of Iron Age settlement NE of king Stone, (1995)

End of official listing