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Cross dyke and field banks in Peaks Wood 210m east of Hellscomb Cottages

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: Cross dyke and field banks in Peaks Wood 210m east of Hellscomb Cottages

List entry Number: 1019191

Location

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

County:

District: Wiltshire

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: Aldbourne

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 09-Nov-2000

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: 33956

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 remains of the cross dyke and associated field banks in Peaks Wood, 210m east of Hellscomb Cottages, survive well as a substantial earthwork. The survival of deposits relating to the construction and use of the monument is likely to be good. These deposits will contain important information about the dating of the dyke and environmental evidence relating to the landscape in which it was constructed.

History

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

Details

The monument includes a cross dyke and a series of field banks at Peaks Wood, on the upper south western slopes of a chalk ridge known as Peaks Downs, overlooking Wanborough Plain.

The cross dyke consists of a chalk-cut ditch a maximum of 3m in width and 1.3m in depth which runs for approximately 220m on a north east to south west axis down the valley side. A slight bank running along the edge of the northern side is thought to be a modern feature. Three roughly parallel banks 160m in length run south from the south western half of the cross dyke and represent the remains of an associated enclosure or field system. The banks, which are up to 1.5m in width and 0.4m in height are joined at their southern ends by a further bank running north east to south west.

The cross dyke was first mentioned by Richard Colt-Hoare in 1819 in conjunction with a disc barrow to the north west which is the subject of a separate scheduling.

All fences 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. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Colt-Hoare, R, History of Ancient Wiltshire, (1819), 36
Other
Ordnance Survey, NMR: SU 27 NE 22,
Ordnance Survey, NMR: SU 27 NE 619, (1973)
Wiltshire County Council, 1:10000 Vertical, (1991)
Wiltshire County Council, SU27 NE619,

National Grid Reference: SU 26082 78923

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. 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 - 1019191 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 15-Dec-2017 at 04:32:26.

End of official listing