Aerial view of hill fort surrounded by trees.
Cadbury Castle, South Cadbury, Somerset. © Historic England Archive. DP263482. View the List entry.
Cadbury Castle, South Cadbury, Somerset. © Historic England Archive. DP263482. View the List entry.

Scheduled Hillforts in England

Hillforts are amongst the most striking of all archaeological monuments in England; their hilltop locations and often massive earthworks make a very powerful statement to the modern observer about the organisation, manual skills, labour and beliefs of Iron Age peoples over 2000 years ago.

Hillforts are defended places, surrounded by one or more circuits of banks and ditches, and generally placed on hilltops, ridges, spurs or promontories. Archaeologists have studied hillforts for 150 years. A brief chronology from 900 to 100 BC and a description of hillforts and their development follows. The variability amongst hillforts in terms of their size, form, defensive strength and occupation is immense. Some hillforts were built on the sites of Neolithic causewayed enclosures, some incorporate barrows, and many are associated with a number of other monument types in their contemporary late prehistoric landscape. 

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Scheduled Monuments

Scheduling is the selection of nationally important archaeological sites. Although archaeology is all around us, Scheduled sites form a carefully chosen sample of them, which are closely managed.

Our scheduling selection guides explain our approach to scheduling. For archaeological sites and monuments they are divided into categories ranging from Agriculture to Utilities and complement the listing selection guides for buildings. In each guide, a historical introduction is followed by a consideration of protection issues, together with sources of further information.

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The Missing Pieces Project

The List has over 400,000 entries: tower blocks and tombstones, barrows and bunkers, palaces and pigsties, plague crosses and piers, cathedrals, windmills and rollercoasters. Their stories are still being told.

Every snapshot and story you add to a List entry is an important piece of the picture. The more pieces of the picture we have, the better we can work together to protect what makes these places special.


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