Ancient Monuments

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Cross dyke on Knowle Hill, 430m south of East Creech Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Church Knowle, Dorset

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Latitude: 50.6388 / 50°38'19"N

Longitude: -2.0997 / 2°5'58"W

OS Eastings: 393047.207548

OS Northings: 82122.440842

OS Grid: SY930821

Mapcode National: GBR 33D.XMV

Mapcode Global: FRA 67HD.1TJ

Entry Name: Cross dyke on Knowle Hill, 430m south of East Creech Farm

Scheduled Date: 22 July 1964

Last Amended: 14 February 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014843

English Heritage Legacy ID: 28330

County: Dorset

Civil Parish: Church Knowle

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Wareham Lady St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument includes a cross dyke, aligned north east by south west, 430m
south of East Creech Farm at the western end of Knowle Hill, a chalk outcrop
of the Isle of Purbeck, overlooking the Corfe Valley to the south. The cross
dyke forms part of a group associated with an Iron Age hilltop enclosure on
Knowle Hill.
The cross dyke has a bank composed of earth, flint and chalk with maximum
dimensions of 46m in length, 7m in width and c.0.5m in height. This is
bordered on the western side by a ditch from which material was quarried
during the construction of the monument. The ditch is visible as an earthwork
with maximum dimensions of 4m in width and c.0.4m in depth.

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

Cross dykes are substantial linear earthworks typically between 0.2km and 1km
long and comprising one or more ditches arranged beside and parallel to one or
more banks. They generally occur in upland situations, running across ridges
and spurs. They are recognised as earthworks or as cropmarks on aerial
photographs, or as combinations of both. The evidence of excavation and
analogy with associated monuments demonstrates that their construction spans
the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although they may have been re-used
later. Current information favours the view that they were used as territorial
boundary markers, probably demarcating land allotment within communities,
although they may also have been used as trackways, cattle droveways or
defensive earthworks. Cross dykes are one of the few monument types which
illustrate how land was divided up in the prehistoric period. They are of
considerable importance for any analysis of settlement and land use in the
Bronze Age. Very few have survived to the present day and hence all well-
preserved examples are considered to be of national importance.

The cross dyke on Knowle Hill, 430m south of East Creech Farm survives
well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to
the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 517
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 517

Source: Historic England

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