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Small multivallate hillfort called Rawlsbury Camp

A Scheduled Monument in Woolland, Dorset

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Coordinates

Latitude: 50.8513 / 50°51'4"N

Longitude: -2.3316 / 2°19'53"W

OS Eastings: 376748.895655

OS Northings: 105808.731783

OS Grid: ST767058

Mapcode National: GBR 0XX.KBR

Mapcode Global: FRA 660V.7G5

Entry Name: Small multivallate hillfort called Rawlsbury Camp

Scheduled Date: 8 November 1928

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1003207

English Heritage Legacy ID: DO 92

County: Dorset

Civil Parish: Woolland

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Hilton and Ansty

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury

Details

The monument includes a small multivallate hillfort, situated on the summit of a prominent spur extending north west from the chalk escarpment of Bulbarrow Hill. The ground falls steeply to the north and south east and less steeply to the west. A narrow ridge leads to the hillfort from the east. The hillfort survives as a roughly oval interior of approximately 1.6ha defined by double rampart banks, both with ditches. They are largely closely concentric but separated by an additional berm to the north and south. The ramparts and ditches survive differentially with the inner rampart standing up to 1.5m high above the interior and 5.7m above the ditch. The inner ditch is up to 9m wide in places. The outer rampart stands up to 1.2m high internally and 6m high above the ditch. The outer ditch, where best preserved, is up to 7m wide and 1.2m deep. To the south are faint traces of a slight counterscarp bank. The hillfort is thought to have developed from an earlier slight univallate hillfort which was extended by further outer defences. The single eastern entrance has an elaborate out-turned entrance with a possible barbican or outwork formed by the outer rampart. During 1951 chance finds of Iron Age pottery were made. The northern side of the hillfort has been cut by a road and several tracks. The hillfort is crossed by a parish boundary which is marked by a hedge. The hillfort is also known locally as 'Rawlsbury Rings'.

Sources: HER:-
PastScape Monument No:-201750

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Small multivallate hillforts are defined as fortified enclosures of varying shape, generally between 1 and 5ha in size and located on hilltops. They are defined by boundaries consisting of two or more lines of closely set earthworks spaced at intervals of up to 15m. These entirely surround the interior except on sites located on promontories, where cliffs may form one or more sides of the monument. Small multivallate hillforts are defined as fortified enclosures of varying shape, generally between 1 and 5ha in size and located on hilltops. They are defined by boundaries consisting of two or more lines of closely set earthworks spaced at intervals of up to 15m. These entirely surround the interior. Earthworks may consist of a rampart alone or of a rampart and ditch which, on many sites, are associated with counterscarp banks and internal quarry scoops. Access to the interior is generally provided by one or two entrances, either simple gaps in the earthwork or inturned passages, sometimes with guardrooms. The interior generally consists of settlement evidence including round houses, four and six post structures interpreted as raised granaries, roads, pits, gullies, hearths and a variety of scattered post and stake holes. Evidence from outside numerous examples of small multivallate hillforts suggests that extra-mural settlement was of a similar nature. Small multivallate hillforts are rare with around 100 examples recorded nationally. Most are located in the Welsh Marches and the south-west with a concentration of small monuments in the north-east. They are a rare form of hillfort and important for understanding the nature of settlement and social organisation within the Iron Age period. Despite past erosion and some cutting of the ramparts for a road and tracks, the small multivallate hillfort called Rawlsbury Camp survives comparatively well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, development, longevity, trade, agricultural practices, social organisation, territorial significance, domestic arrangements and overall landscape context.

Source: Historic England

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