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Manless Town medieval settlement and the buried remains of a Roman camp

A Scheduled Monument in Brimpsfield, Gloucestershire

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Latitude: 51.8032 / 51°48'11"N

Longitude: -2.1052 / 2°6'18"W

OS Eastings: 392838.747783

OS Northings: 211624.629478

OS Grid: SO928116

Mapcode National: GBR 2N8.W0Q

Mapcode Global: VH94M.GYD1

Entry Name: Manless Town medieval settlement and the buried remains of a Roman camp

Scheduled Date: 24 April 2012

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1405816

County: Gloucestershire

Civil Parish: Brimpsfield

Traditional County: Gloucestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Gloucestershire

Church of England Parish: Brimpsfield St Michael

Church of England Diocese: Gloucester


A deserted medieval village surviving as earthworks and buried remains which partly overlies the buried remains of a probable Roman camp.

Source: Historic England


MEDIEVAL SETTLEMENT: the settlement consists of earthworks and buried remains representing plot or croft boundaries; tofts or building platforms; and trackways or hollow ways of the medieval settlement. These are associated with a system of lynchets and field enclosures.
The site is bisected centrally by a road with archaeological remains in the fields to the east and west. The main concentration of building and croft platforms of the medieval settlement lie to the east of the current road and consist of earthworks which mostly stand over 0.5m high and buried remains. The earthworks include a number of rectangular platforms of various sizes, and ditches or linear features, possibly defining small paddocks or enclosures. They include a linear arrangement of at least three rectangular building platforms which lie in the centre of this half of the site. One of the most prominent earthwork features is a large rectangular platform with a central division, and measuring approximately 45m north-west to south-east by 10m south-west to north-east. It lies to the south of the group of platforms and overlies earlier croft boundaries. The eastern part of the settlement contains a large ditch which may represent a hollow way or later quarrying activities. The southern part of this half of the site contains a further large rectangular field platform and evidence of lynchets. Adjacent to the road is another linear feature that has been identified as a hollow way. Part of the site in this area has been overlain by dumped topsoil, although two post-medieval quarries are visible to the south.

Further platforms and earthworks are visible in the north part of the settlement which, although less well defined, possibly due to subsequent quarrying and ploughing in this area, represent further features associated with the medieval settlement.

ROMAN CAMP: underlying the medieval settlement and extending into the field to the west of the road are the buried remains of a Roman camp, identified from field investigations in the 1960s. This rectangular feature is visible on aerial photographs and linear crop marks define the east and south-east boundaries of the camp which overall measures approximately 183m wide (north to south) and 174m long (east to west). The eastern boundary is also visible on the surface as a slight change of slope running north to south. Partial excavation in the field to the west of the road uncovered evidence for a large ditch with a V-shaped profile which has been interpreted as part of the camp's defensive ditch. The footings of dry-stone walls, post-holes and pits were also located within the enclosure. The camp is considered to survive as a buried feature where it extends eastwards, beneath the medieval settlement and the road.

EXCLUSIONS: all gates and fence posts which relate to the modern field boundaries, and the surface of the modern road are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included. 

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Manless Town medieval settlement and the buried remains of the Roman camp is scheduled for the following principal reasons: 
* Survival of Roman camp remains: despite being reduced by ploughing, the Roman camp will retain significant archaeological information including buried deposits illustrating the nature of occupation, artefactual evidence indicating the date of construction and the duration of use;
* Survival of medieval settlement : the earthworks of the medieval settlement survive well and contain a good range of features such as building platforms, trackways, enclosures and field systems relating to the occupation of the site and farming practices during the medieval period;
* Potential: both excavated and unexplored areas contain the potential to provide further evidence to increase understanding of the character and occupation of both the Roman camp and the medieval settlement which overlies the northern part of the camp;
* Documentation: both the Roman camp and the medieval settlement are well documented by aerial photography, excavation and field survey which have confirmed their importance; the medieval settlement is also referenced in historical documents;
* Group value: the re-occupation of the site during the medieval period provides added interest.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Roberts, , Wrathmell, , An Atlas of Rural Settlement in England, (2000)
Smith, N, 'Glenvsis' in Manless Town, Brimpsfield: An Archaeological Survey, , Vol. 31, (1998)
Wingman, H, Spry, N, 'Glenvsis' in More Recent Views on Manless Town, Brimpsfield SO928116, , Vol. 27, (1993), pp. 26-32
Josephone Janik, Amanda Dickson, Russell Priest, An Archaeological Aerial Survey in the Cotswold Hills: A Report for the National Mapping Programme, (2011)
Title: Map and Documentary Interpretation in Brimpsfield
Source Date: 1988

Source: Historic England

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