Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Cross dyke on Woolavington Down, 625m east of Tegleaze Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Graffham, West Sussex

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Latitude: 50.9322 / 50°55'55"N

Longitude: -0.6651 / 0°39'54"W

OS Eastings: 493900.917242

OS Northings: 115595.285326

OS Grid: SU939155

Mapcode National: GBR FH3.DPC

Mapcode Global: FRA 96HN.2P0

Entry Name: Cross dyke on Woolavington Down, 625m east of Tegleaze Farm

Scheduled Date: 10 May 1963

Last Amended: 7 August 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015964

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29290

County: West Sussex

Civil Parish: Graffham

Traditional County: Sussex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): West Sussex

Church of England Parish: Graffham St Giles with Woolavington St Peter

Church of England Diocese: Chichester


The monument includes a north east-south west aligned cross dyke constructed
across a chalk ridge which forms part of the Sussex Downs. The 778m long cross
dyke has a ditch up to approximately 8m wide and 0.4m deep, flanked to the
north west by a bank up to about 6m wide and 0.8m high. Seven short sections
of the earthworks have been levelled by modern tracks, and modern ploughing
has disturbed an approximately 140m long stretch of the ditch near the centre
of the monument. The ditch will survive in these sections as a below ground
archaeological feature. The earthworks gradually fade out at either end of the
monument as the ground slopes away.
The modern fences which cross the monument are excluded from the scheduling,
although the ground beneath them 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

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 Woolavington Down 625m east of Tegleaze Farm survives well,
despite some subsequent disturbance, and will contain archaeological remains
and environmental evidence relating to its construction and original purpose.
The cross dyke forms part of a group of linear earthworks and round barrows
which cluster along this part of the downland ridge. These monuments are
broadly contemporary and their close association will provide evidence for the
relationship between land division and funerary practices during the later
prehistoric period.

Source: Historic England

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