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Hilltop enclosure and woodbanks in Chacegrove Wood, 540m north west of Dartington Hall

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: Hilltop enclosure and woodbanks in Chacegrove Wood, 540m north west of Dartington Hall

List entry Number: 1020553

Location

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

County: Devon

District: South Hams

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Dartington

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 06-Mar-2002

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: 33786

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

Hilltop enclosures are defined as sub-rectangular or elongated areas of ground, usually between 10ha and 40ha in size, situated on hilltops or plateaux and surrounded by slight univallate earthworks. They date to between the Bronze Age and Early Iron Age (eighth-fifth centuries BC) and are usually interpreted as stock enclosures or sites where agricultural produce was stored. Many examples of hilltop enclosures may have developed into more strongly defended sites later in the Iron Age period and are therefore often difficult to recognise in their original form. The earthworks generally consist of a bank separated from an external ditch by a level berm. Access to the interior was generally provided by two or three entrances which consisted of simple gaps in the rampart. Evidence for internal features is largely dependent on excavation, and to date this has included large areas of sparsely scattered features including post and stakeholes, hearths and pits. Rectangular or square buildings are also evident; these are generally defined by between four and six postholes and are thought to have supported raised granaries. Hilltop enclosures are rare, with between 25 and 30 examples recorded nationally. A greater number may exist but these could have been developed into hillforts later in the Iron Age and could only be confirmed by detailed survey or excavation. The majority of known examples are located in two regions, on the chalk downland of Wessex and Sussex and in the Cotswolds. More scattered examples are found in north-east Oxfordshire and north Northamptonshire. This class of monument has not been recorded outside England. In view of the rarity of hilltop enclosures and their importance in understanding the transition between Bronze Age and Iron Age communities, all examples with surviving archaeological remains are believed to be of national importance.

Despite slight damage to its ramparts, the hilltop enclosure in Chacegrove Wood, 540m north west of Dartington Hall is well-preserved. Its rampart, buried ditch and interior contain archaeological and environmental information relating to the enclosure and the landscape in which it was built. Its relationship with the medieval and post-medieval woodbanks which adjoin it is of importance to the future understanding of the site. The deerpark at Dartington and its internal woodbanks retain important features relating to the development and use of this complex site. Stratified archaeological deposits are likely to survive in the ditches and beneath the banks and will be of considerable importance to the future understanding of the monument. The deer park and its internal woodbanks, including that within this scheduling, retain important features relating to the development and use of this complex site. Stratified archaeological deposits are likely to survive in the ditches and beneath the banks and will be of considerable importance to the future understanding of the monument.

History

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

Details

This monument includes a hilltop enclosure located in a wood on the gentle south facing slope of a low hill, with medieval and post-medieval woodbanks adjoining to the south and east. The enclosure survives as a flattened ovoid earthwork, aligned east to west. Its interior measures 22m long and 6m wide with a low internal bank, aligned north to south, 4m wide and 0.3m high. The enclosure bank measures 10m wide and is from 0.4m to 0.7m high, with an entrance 3m wide on its north side. No traces of an outer ditch survive. A medieval woodbank to the west of the enclosure is 3m wide, sloping up 1.6m from the interior of Chacegrove Wood on the north side and falling vertically into the field to its south. This was an internal division of the medieval Dartington deer park, with a wooded chase to the north east and open ground to the south west. It is sinuous in shape and survives for a distance of 245m, enclosing the south side of Chacegrove Wood. A post-medieval woodbank runs along the south east side of the wood, south east of the medieval woodbank. It is constructed of stone rubble enclosing an earth bank 2m wide and up to 1.6m high. A rock cut ditch to its north west measures 5m wide and up to 1m deep and provided the limestone facing for the bank. 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.

Selected Sources

Other
MPP fieldwork by R Waterhouse, Waterhouse, R, (2000)
MPP fieldwork by R Waterhouse, Waterhouse, R, (2000)

National Grid Reference: SX 79353 62982

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.
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This copy shows the entry on 18-Nov-2017 at 03:08:58.

End of official listing