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Medieval settlement of Eythrope

A Scheduled Monument in Waddesdon, Buckinghamshire

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Latitude: 51.8181 / 51°49'5"N

Longitude: -0.8763 / 0°52'34"W

OS Eastings: 477552.713625

OS Northings: 213870.484388

OS Grid: SP775138

Mapcode National: GBR C1B.TJL

Mapcode Global: VHDV3.RKLM

Entry Name: Medieval settlement of Eythrope

Scheduled Date: 26 June 2013

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1405583

County: Buckinghamshire

Civil Parish: Waddesdon

Traditional County: Buckinghamshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Buckinghamshire

Church of England Parish: Waddesdon with Over Winchendon and Fleet Marston

Church of England Diocese: Oxford


The buried and earthwork remains of the medieval settlement of Eythrope and a sample of its surrounding common fields visible as ridge and furrow.

Source: Historic England


The monument includes the buried and visible remains of the deserted village of Eythrope, and a sample of its surrounding common fields, visible as ridge and furrow.

The village occupied low-lying land on the north bank of the River Thame. An inlet from the river which forms an ornamental stretch of water, part of the later park landscaping, lies immediately to the west of the earthworks. The village survives as earthworks that represent rectangular domestic enclosures, eight or nine of which can be seen delineated by narrow ditches or paths to the north of a hollow way, the main street through the village. The smallest of these measures about 35m by 15m, the largest 60m by 37m. To the south of the hollow-way, at the east end of the village, is a slightly larger trapezoidal enclosure measuring 75m by 65m. There are also further faint signs of ditches indicating other enclosures to the south of the main street. At its widest points the village measures 275m by 325m, its boundaries clearly marked by the surrounding ridge and furrow of its common fields. To the south and east a ditch about 2m wide makes a sharp demarcation between village and fields: its continuation to the north-east has now been replaced by a modern drain. To the north-west a slight bank separates low ridge and furrow from the village enclosures.

To the south of the village is a distinctive corduroy pattern of interlaced lands which run north to south and east to west. These are enclosed by a bank and ditch, which begins as a continuation of the village street, running east for a distance of about 325m before turning sharply south, then south-west and west: it fades out just before joining the River Thame close to the ornamental inlet. A modern drain runs directly east towards the river from the south-east corner, before the bank turns back to the south-west. To the north the internal bank is breached at irregular intervals, and there is evidence of a second, slighter ditch to the south of the bank. This internal ditch is more evident on the south boundary. The purpose of this was presumably to both drain and defend the fields from river floods.

To the north of this complex arrangement of lands is a large block of ridge and furrow, with lands of varying width running from south-west to north-east. Immediately to either side of the bank and ditch separating these two fields the ridge and furrow has been levelled to create a flat surface. Within this zone to the north there is a slightly raised rectangular enclosure, about 60m east to west and 10m north to south, banked on three sides, with the fourth marked by the ditch. It is thought that these were areas set aside for storage and rick building, and part of this has been included in the scheduled area.

Ridge and furrow continues over at least two fields to the north of the village, but only the two fields described above, and the smaller rectangle of ridge and furrow to the north-west of the village are included as a sample within the scheduled area to provide evidence of the agricultural regime practised by the villagers.

Extent of Scheduling

The scheduling is intended to provide protection for the visible and buried remains of the village, with a sample of its immediate surrounding fields. The scheduled area includes the village earthworks, a small rectangle of ridge and furrow to the north-west, the south field and its enclosing bank and ditch, and part of the field to the north-east. The latter is defined to the north-east by a line 50m to the south of the field boundary which is also the parish boundary, and by another field boundary to the east. The north-west boundary of the north field is defined by a field boundary before turning a right angle to the north-west, where it follows a slightly irregular course excluding a triangle of trees at the north-west corner, defining the north-west edge of the village earthworks and the rectangle of ridge and furrow. The north-west scheduling boundary is defined by the field boundary here. The scheduling boundary on the west side is 10m to the east of the existing boundary of the outer edge of woodland that borders the ornamental inlet. To the south the scheduling boundary follows the outside of the bank and ditch, with an allowance of 2m for its protection and maintenance. At its widest points, the scheduled area measures about 650m from west to east and 540m from north to south. Where the scheduling boundary follows field boundaries it lies within the line of the fence.

All fences, fence posts, telegraph poles, water troughs and gates that fall within the scheduled area are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground around and beneath them is included.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

The medieval settlement at Eythrope and a representative sample of its associated field systems are scheduled for the following principal reasons:
* Survival: the earthworks of the medieval settlement survive well and contain a varied range of features such as building platforms, crofts, enclosures and trackways relating to the occupation of the site. The field systems to the north-east and south-west of the settlement also survive well and retain fossilised remains of medieval ploughing;
* Potential: the site is un-excavated and undamaged and has the potential to provide evidence to increase understanding of the character and occupation of this medieval settlement. The field systems relating to the settlement have the potential to increase knowledge of farming practices during the medieval period;
* Group value: the field systems to the north-east and south-west are associated directly with the medieval settlement and were an essential component of the settlement's agrarian economy. Their functional inter-relationship is therefore clear and they have a strong visual relationship also.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Buckinghamshire: Volume IV, (1927)
Aerial Photographs 1994 NMR 15033/51, 15033/52,
Aerial Photoographs Cambridge University Unit for Landscape Modelling BWJ005; AZU21,23; AMP19,20s,
HM Colvin, Eythrope House and its Demolition in 1810-11, Records of Bucks vol 17 1964,

Source: Historic England

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