Ancient Monuments

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Earthwork enclosure on Rodhuish Common, 300m west of Moor Barn

A Scheduled Monument in Luxborough, Somerset

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Latitude: 51.1435 / 51°8'36"N

Longitude: -3.4323 / 3°25'56"W

OS Eastings: 299901.183252

OS Northings: 139224.725401

OS Grid: SS999392

Mapcode National: GBR LL.8890

Mapcode Global: VH6GT.GJB7

Entry Name: Earthwork enclosure on Rodhuish Common, 300m west of Moor Barn

Scheduled Date: 11 August 2003

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1021122

English Heritage Legacy ID: 35711

County: Somerset

Civil Parish: Luxborough

Traditional County: Somerset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Somerset


The monument includes an earthwork enclosure of probable Iron Age date
located on the southern edge of Rodhuish Common, situated on the lower
south and east-facing slope of Monkham Hill. The enclosure is near
circular in plan with a levelled interior which is defined on the north,
south and eastern sides by a low earth and stone bank with an average
height of 0.6m. The western side of the enclosure is defined by an
inward-facing scarp up to 1.7m high which is cut into the natural slope of
the hill. The overall dimensions of the enclosure are 31.7m from north to
south and 28.3m from east to west. A simple gap in the bank on the north
west side, close to where the inward-facing scarp is most well-defined, is
thought to be a later modification.

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

Exmoor is the most easterly of the three main upland areas in the south
western peninsula of England. In contrast to the other two areas, Dartmoor
and Bodmin Moor, there has been no history of antiquarian research and
little excavation of Exmoor monuments. However, detailed survey work by
the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England has confirmed
a comparable richness of archaeological remains, with evidence of human
exploitation and occupation from the Mesolithic period to the present day.
Hillslope enclosures provide the main evidence for the Iron Age on Exmoor.
First categorised by Lady Aileen Fox in 1952, their morphology has been
refined by the Royal Commission survey. Despite their name they do not
occur only on hillslopes, although their usual location is on a sheltered
valley side. They are smaller than hillforts, generally no larger than
between 50m and 80m across, and usually less well defended. The enclosure
itself is defined by a single bank, often with an associated ditch, with a
single entrance. In some cases, where natural slopes form part of the
defences, the bank may not form a complete circuit and may be missing
where the angle of slope acts in its stead. Where it can be recognised,
the settlement evidence within these enclosures comprises platforms
indicating the position of buildings.
Around 50 hillslope enclosures with upstanding earthworks have been
identified on Exmoor. They are particularly representative of their period
and a substantial proportion of surviving examples, particularly those with
a complete or near complete circuit of defences, are considered worthy of

The earthwork enclosure on Rodhuish Common, 300m west of Moor Barn,
survives comparatively well and is one of a number of similarly
constructed enclosures which occupy hill-slopes in the locality. It will
contain environmental evidence and archaeological deposits relating to the
purpose of the enclosure, its inhabitants and the landscape in which they

Source: Historic England


SS 93 NE 90, National Monuments Record,

Source: Historic England

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