Offa's Dyke: section 400m north and 170m east of Selley Hall


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1020904

Date first listed: 23-Feb-1933

Date of most recent amendment: 15-Apr-2004


Ordnance survey map of Offa's Dyke: section 400m north and 170m east of Selley Hall
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. 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 - 1020904 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 21-Nov-2018 at 01:39:41.


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

District: Shropshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Llanfair Waterdine

National Grid Reference: SO 26427 76972, SO 26605 76641


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

Reasons for Designation

Offa's Dyke is the longest linear earthwork in Britain, approximately 220km, running from Treuddyn, near Mold, to Sedbury on the Severn estuary. It was constructed towards the end of the eighth century AD by the Mercian king Offa, and is believed to have formed a long-lived territorial, and possibly defensive, boundary between the Saxon kingdom of Mercia and the Welsh kingdoms. The Dyke is not continuous and consists of a number of discrete lengths separated by gaps of up to 23km. It is clear from the nature of certain sections that differences in the scale and character of adjoining portions were the result of separate gangs being employed on different lengths. Where possible, natural topographic features such as slopes or rivers were utilised, and the form of Offa's Dyke is therefore clearly related to the topography. Along most of its length it consists of a bank with a ditch to the west. Excavation has indicated that at least some lengths of the bank had a vertical outer face of either laid stonework or turf revetment. The ditch generally seems to have been used to provide most of the bank material, although there is also evidence in some locations of shallow quarries. In places, a berm divides the bank and ditch, and a counterscarp bank may be present on the lip of the ditch. Offa's Dyke now survives in various states of preservation in the form of earthworks and, where sections have been levelled and infilled, as buried features. Although some sections of the frontier system no longer survive visibly, sufficient evidence does exist for its position to be accurately identified throughout most of its length. In view of its contribution towards the study of early medieval territorial patterns, all sections of Offa's Dyke exhibiting significant archaeological remains are considered worthy of protection.

The section of Offa's Dyke 400m north and 170m east of Selley Hall survives well despite some erosion by ploughing. This section also preserves quarry pits which are less common in the Shropshire sections of the Dyke. These provide additional information on the construction and use of the monument. Environmental evidence in the form of pollen and seeds will be preserved in the ditch and quarry pit fills and on the buried ground surface beneath the bank and counterscarp bank. This will contain information about the landscape in which the monument was constructed. This section is part of the Offa's Dyke national footpath and as such is an important recreational and educational resource.


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


The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a section of the linear boundary known as Offa's Dyke. It lies within two separate areas of protection, 400m north and 170m east of Selley Hall. Offa's Dyke generally consists of a bank up to 3.5m high with a intermittent parallel ditch and quarry pits in places. It was strengthened in some areas by additional earthworks, namely a berm and a counterscarp bank on the outer lip of the ditch. In this section the Dyke runs for 850m from the south side of the road south of Garbett Hall to the farmyard at Brynorgan. At the monument's northern end, within the first area of protection, the bank and ditch are visible for 35m before being crossed by a stream. No remains of the Dyke have been identified in the stream bed and this area is not included in the scheduling. Beyond the stream and 25m further south within the second area, the defences are visible as a broad bank and ditch with a counterscarp bank clearly visible, although somewhat reduced by ploughing. In places the bank takes the form of a terrace because of hillwash and the steepness of the slope. Immediately to the east of the bank are a number of quarry pits which provided additional material for the bank in places. These quarry pits are included in the scheduling to preserve their relationship with the Dyke. The Dyke is crossed by the road to Brynorgan. Although the bank has been reduced in this area, both it and the ditch will survive as buried features. Beyond this road, a farm trackway follows the Dyke on the east side, slightly modifying the bank which is visible as a slight berm. On the opposite side of the track to the west the ditch and counterscarp are clearly defined. The Dyke is then visible as an earthwork immediately west of Brynorgan for some 80m beyond which it has been destroyed by a small quarry pit. Further sections of Offa's Dyke 40m to the north and 40m to the south are the subject of separate schedulings. All fence posts, gates and the surface of the farmtrack to Brynorgan and the road to Selley Cross 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.


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

Legacy System number: 32605

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Kay, K, Richards, , Offa's Dyke Path North, (1995), 18
Noble, F, Offa's Dyke Reviewed, (1983), 61

End of official listing