Ancient Monuments

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Ring ditches and rectilinear enclosures east of Tupsley

A Scheduled Monument in Hampton Bishop, Herefordshire,

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Latitude: 52.0541 / 52°3'14"N

Longitude: -2.6669 / 2°40'1"W

OS Eastings: 354363.847868

OS Northings: 239738.173681

OS Grid: SO543397

Mapcode National: GBR FN.DM34

Mapcode Global: VH85P.QMGN

Entry Name: Ring ditches and rectilinear enclosures E of Tupsley

Scheduled Date: 19 August 1976

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1005348

English Heritage Legacy ID: HE 190

County: Herefordshire,

Civil Parish: Hampton Bishop

Built-Up Area: Hereford

Traditional County: Herefordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Herefordshire

Church of England Parish: Hampton Bishop

Church of England Diocese: Hereford


Multi period landscape1140m WSW of Tidnor House Farm.

Source: Historic England


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 21 May 2015. This 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. As such they do not yet have the full descriptions of their modernised counterparts available. Please contact us if you would like further information.

This monument includes a multi period landscape including doubled ditched enclosures, successive rectangular enclosures and a series of ring ditches situated in the valley and on the floodplain of the River Lugg beside a number of drainage ditches and close to the confluences with the Rivers Wye and Frome and the Back Brook. The multi period landscape survives as buried structures, features, layers and deposits visible as crop and soil marks on aerial photographs. These features are extensive and include square double ditched enclosures, additional double ditched linear features, successive rectangular enclosures interpreted as enclosed prehistoric settlements, a further large rectangular enclosure with rounded corners may be of Romano-British date and a series of ring ditches of various sizes seem to indicate a prehistoric round barrow cemetery is also present.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They comprise closely-spaced groups of up to 30 round barrows - rubble or earthen mounds covering single or multiple burials. Most cemeteries developed over a considerable period of time, often many centuries, and in some cases acted as a focus for burials as late as the early medieval period. They exhibit considerable diversity of burial rite, plan and form, frequently including several different types of round barrow, occasionally associated with earlier long barrows. Where large scale investigation has been undertaken around them, contemporary or later "flat" burials between the barrow mounds have often been revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland Britain. Their diversity and longevity as a monument type provides important information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period. Small enclosed settlements dating from the Middle Bronze Age are known on some sites to have replaced earlier unenclosed settlements. Enclosures of both sub-rectangular and curvilinear plan are known; the sites are wholly or partly surrounded by a ditch, bank or palisade, or by a combination or succession of all three. Where excavated, sites have usually been found to contain a small group of domestic buildings sufficient for a single or extended family group, although a few larger enclosures are known. Evidence of a succession of buildings has been found on some sites. The buildings are usually circular in plan but occasional rectangular structures are known. Both types of building would have provided a combination of living accommodation and storage or working areas. Storage pits have been recorded inside buildings on some sites but are generally rarely present. In addition to pottery and worked flint, large quantities of burnt stone and metal working debris have been found in some enclosures. They are integral to understanding Bronze Age settlement and land use strategies, while their often close proximity to the numerous burial monuments in the area will provide insights into the relationship between secular and ceremonial activity during the Middle Bronze Age. A small number of these small enclosed settlements survive as visible earthworks; the majority, however, occur in areas of more intensive cultivation and survive in buried form, visible only from the air as soil marks and crop marks. The size and form of Iron Age enclosed settlements vary considerably from single farmsteads up to large semi-urban oppida. Farmsteads are generally represented by curvilinear enclosures containing evidence of a small group of circular domestic buildings and associated agricultural structures. Where excavated, these sites are also found to contain pits or rectangular post- built structures for the storage of grain and other produce, evidence of an organised and efficient farming system. The surrounding enclosures would have provided protection against cattle rustling and tribal raiding. Their survival in cultivated areas is similar to those of earlier settlement types. Despite cultivation the multi period landscape1140m WSW of Tidnor House Farm survives comparatively well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to the construction, development and successive settlement of the area, its social organisation, agricultural practices, domestic arrangements, ritual and funerary activities, interrelationships between monuments, their chronological development and overall landscape context.

Source: Historic England


PastScape 110268

Source: Historic England

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