Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Painswick Hill (or Kimsbury) camp

A Scheduled Monument in Upton St. Leonards, Gloucestershire

We don't have any photos of this monument yet. Why don't you be the first to send us one?

Upload Photo »

Approximate Location Map
Large Map »

If Google Street View is available, the image is from the best available vantage point looking, if possible, towards the location of the monument. Where it is not available, the satellite view is shown instead.


Latitude: 51.8074 / 51°48'26"N

Longitude: -2.1909 / 2°11'27"W

OS Eastings: 386936.461169

OS Northings: 212100.166473

OS Grid: SO869121

Mapcode National: GBR 1LT.QWR

Mapcode Global: VH94K.ZT4T

Entry Name: Painswick Hill (or Kimsbury) camp

Scheduled Date: 5 January 1927

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1004865

English Heritage Legacy ID: GC 51

County: Gloucestershire

Civil Parish: Upton St. Leonards

Traditional County: Gloucestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Gloucestershire

Church of England Parish: Painswick St Mary the Virgin

Church of England Diocese: Gloucester


Large multivallate hillfort 630m north west of Lyncombe Farm.

Source: Historic England


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 8 July 2015. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes a large multivallate hillfort situated on the summit of a prominent hill which forms the watershed between the valleys of the River Twyer, Painswick Stream and Wash Brook. The hillfort survives as a roughly triangular enclosed area defined on the west and south sides by three rampart banks with two medial ditches and to the north by a natural scarp augmented by a single rampart bank. There is an inturned entrance to the south east and a simple entrance to the north west with an old trackway. In total the hillfort covers an area of approximately 8.8ha.

The subject of recent extensive earthwork repairs and restoration the interior, despite extensive past quarrying has produced chance finds of Iron Age and Romano-British date, including pottery. The hillfort is known locally by a number of different names including ‘Painswick Beacon’, ‘Painswick Hill Camp’, ‘Kimsbury Hillfort’ and ‘Castle Godwyn’. It is believed to have been occupied in 1643 during the English Civil War as an outpost by the army of King Charles I during the siege of Gloucester.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Large multivallate hillforts are defined as fortified enclosures of between 5ha and 85ha in area, located on hills and defined by two or more lines of concentric earthworks set at intervals of up to 15m. They date to the Iron Age period, most having been constructed and used between the sixth century BC and the mid-first century AD. They are generally regarded as centres of permanent occupation, defended in response to increasing warfare, a reflection of the power struggle between competing elites. Earthworks usually consist of a rampart and ditch, although some only have ramparts. Access to the interior is generally provided by two entrances although examples with one and more than two have been noted. These may comprise a single gap in the rampart, inturned or offset ramparts, oblique approaches, guardrooms or outworks. Internal features generally include evidence for intensive occupation, often in the form of oval or circular houses. These display variations in size and are often clustered, for example, along streets. Four- and six-post structures, interpreted as raised granaries, also occur widely while a few sites appear to contain evidence for temples. Other features associated with settlement include platforms, paved areas, pits, gullies, fence lines, hearths and ovens. Additional evidence, in the form of artefacts, suggests that industrial activity such as bronze- and iron-working as well as pottery manufacture occurred on many sites.

Large multivallate hillforts are rare with around 50 examples recorded nationally. These occur mostly in two concentrations, in Wessex and the Welsh Marches, although scattered examples occur elsewhere. They are rare and important for understanding the nature of social organisation within the Iron Age period.

Despite quarrying and landscaping for use within a golf course the large multivallate hillfort 630m north west of Lyncombe Farm survives comparatively well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, longevity, trade, agricultural practices, social organisation, territorial significance, domestic arrangements strategic significance, adaptive re-use and overall landscape context.

Source: Historic England


PastScape 115542

Source: Historic England

Other nearby scheduled monuments is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact for any queries related to any individual ancient or schedued monument, planning permission related to scheduled monuments or the scheduling process itself. is a Good Stuff website.