Ancient Monuments

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Enclosed Iron Age farmstead 700m west of Horderley Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Edgton, Shropshire

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Latitude: 52.4766 / 52°28'35"N

Longitude: -2.8831 / 2°52'59"W

OS Eastings: 340116.267151

OS Northings: 286887.537007

OS Grid: SO401868

Mapcode National: GBR BC.K0VQ

Mapcode Global: VH765.Z05R

Entry Name: Enclosed Iron Age farmstead 700m west of Horderley Farm

Scheduled Date: 17 September 1936

Last Amended: 20 November 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013511

English Heritage Legacy ID: 19212

County: Shropshire

Civil Parish: Edgton

Traditional County: Shropshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Shropshire

Church of England Parish: Edgton

Church of England Diocese: Hereford


The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of Castle Ring, a small
Iron Age settlement enclosure with an internal area of c.0.3ha situated on the
summit of Ridgeway Hill, a promontory above and south west of the River Onny.
The enclosure is roughly triangular in plan with maximum dimensions of 74m
north east to south west by 60m transversely. The earthworks were designed to
make maximum defensive use of the natural strength of the promontory position
with the minimum of artificial works. To the west and north west precipitous
natural slopes fall towards the river, making any artificial defences
unnecessary around this side of the enclosure. Around the north east and south
east sides, where the ground falls less steeply, substantial earthwork
ramparts have been constructed roughly at right-angles to each other. The
northern is the better preserved; it lies orientated north west to south east,
is 40m long, 10m wide and up to 2m high on its outer face, 1m on its inner.
The southern rampart is less well defined, having been reduced and spread by
past ploughing. It remains visible as an earthwork orientated roughly north
east to south west up to 18m wide and 0.5m high on its outer face, 0.2m on its
inner. At its eastern end it is joined roughly at right angles to the northern
rampart. The northern arm of the defences terminates some 6m short of the
western slope edge, this gap may represent the position of an original
entrance; entrances in such locations are frequently found in this class of
monument. The southern rampart also terminates short of the natural slope edge
at its south west end, though evidence for an entrance at this point is less
easy to confirm. Although no longer visible as surface features, both ramparts
will have outer defensive ditches from which material would have been quarried
for the construction of the ramparts. These ditches will survive as buried
features with an estimated width of 6m and are included in the scheduling.

All fences within the protected area are excluded from the scheduling
although the ground beneath is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

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 storage pits for 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.
In central southern England, most enclosed Iron Age farmsteads are situated in
areas which are now under intensive arable cultivation. As a result, although
some examples survive with upstanding earthworks, the majority have been
recorded as crop- and soil-marks appearing on aerial photographs.

Castle Ring enclosed Iron Age farmstead survives well and is a good example of
its class. The perimeter banks will contain valuable archaeological
information concerning their date and method of construction. Both the
ramparts and the interior of the site will contain archaeological information
relating to the character of the occupation of the site. Environmental
evidence relating to the economy of the inhabitants and the character of the
landscape in which the enclosure was built will be preserved sealed on the old
land surface beneath the rampart and in the lower levels of the ditch fill.

Source: Historic England

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