Ringwork and former field boundary banks 110m west of St Michael's Church


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1020145

Date first listed: 18-Sep-2001


Ordnance survey map of Ringwork and former field boundary banks 110m west of St Michael's Church
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This copy shows the entry on 17-Dec-2018 at 09:23:13.


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

District: Shropshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Aston Botterell

National Grid Reference: SO 63140 84128


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

Reasons for Designation

Ringworks are medieval fortifications built and occupied from the late Anglo-Saxon period to the later 12th century. They comprised a small defended area containing buildings which was surrounded or partly surrounded by a substantial ditch and a bank surmounted by a timber palisade or, rarely, a stone wall. Occasionally a more lightly defended embanked enclosure, the bailey, adjoined the ringwork. Ringworks acted as strongholds for military operations and in some cases as defended aristocratic or manorial settlements. They are rare nationally with only 200 recorded examples and less than 60 with baileys. As such, and as one of a limited number and very restricted range of Anglo-Saxon and Norman fortifications, ringworks are of particular significance to our understanding of the period.

Despite modification to the southern half of the defensive circuit, the ringwork 110m west of St Michael's Church is a good example of this class of monument. In Shropshire, ringworks are comparatively rare in relation to other types of contemporary early medieval castles incorporating a conical mound, or motte. The form of the ringwork is unusual in that the interior has been been partially raised above the level of the surrounding land. Within the interior the remains of the structures will survive as buried features, which together with the associated artefacts and organic remains, will provide valuable evidence about the activities and lifestyles of those who inhabited the site. In addition, organic remains preserved in the buried ground surfaces beneath the raised interior, under the inner and outer banks, and deposited within the ditches, will provide information about the local environment and the use of the land prior to and following the construction of the ringwork. The field boundary banks help to demonstate the nature of agricultural practice on the site following the abandonment of the ringwork.

The importance of the ringwork is further enhanced by its close proximity to, and contemporary association with, St Michael's Church. Also significant is its likely association with Aston Manor.


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


The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a ringwork and the adjacent sections of former field boundary banks. The ringwork is situated on a gentle south facing slope in an area of undulating land. It lies within the hamlet of Aston Botterell, 110m west of the 12th century Church of St Michael and 50m to the west of Aston Manor, built in the 13th century. It is probable that in the 13th century the manor house replaced the ringwork as the manorial residence.

The ringwork is an oval-shaped enclosure, measuring approximately 66m north-south by 74m east-west. The earthwork defences define an internal area approximately 32m by 40m and consist of an internal bank about 7m wide, composed of earth and stone, surrounded by a ditch also about 7m wide, enclosed by an outer bank approximately 3m wide. The northern half of the defensive circuit is much more prominent than the southern half. Here, the internal bank stands up to 1.1m high, the ditch is about 1m deep and the external bank stands about 0.2m high. To the south the banks have been reduced in height and the ditch, which has been largely infilled, survives as a buried feature. To compensate for the natural fall in the ground surface, the southern half of the interior has been slightly raised in order to create a level building platform.

To the west and south of the ringwork are the remains of former field boundary banks, set at right angles to one another. These banks appear to be later than the ringwork, with one running up to its western edge. In order to preserve the relationship between the field boundaries and the ringwork a 30m long section of these banks has been included in the scheduling.

All fence posts 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.


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

Legacy System number: 33846

Legacy System: RSM

End of official listing