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Lodge Wood Camp

A Scheduled Monument in Caerleon (Caerllion), Newport (Casnewydd)

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.617 / 51°37'1"N

Longitude: -2.9789 / 2°58'44"W

OS Eastings: 332320

OS Northings: 191362

OS Grid: ST323913

Mapcode National: GBR J6.99DX

Mapcode Global: VH7B6.BM08

Entry Name: Lodge Wood Camp

Scheduled Date:

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 2345

Cadw Legacy ID: MM023

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Hillfort

Period: Prehistoric

County: Newport (Casnewydd)

Community: Caerleon (Caerllion)

Built-Up Area: Caerleon

Traditional County: Monmouthshire

Description

The monument comprises the remains of a hillfort, which probably dates to the Iron Age period (c. 800 BC - AD 74, the Roman conquest of Wales). Hillforts are usually located on hilltops and surrounded by a single or multiple earthworks of massive proportions. Hillforts must have formed symbols of power within the landscape, while their function may have had as much to do with ostentation and display as defence.

Lodge Wood camp is a large rectangular hillfort situated on the top of a narrow ridge running WSW/ENE on the north-west edge of Caerleon. It occupies a commanding position, with extensive views all round. It is defended by a series of banks and ditches, with a narrow entrance at the west end, and an inner enclosure at the west end. The east end is defended by a single massive, steep-sided bank 4 - 5m high. Towards the north-east corner two outer banks begin, the outermost one peters out almost immediately, the middle one continuing round the corner and becoming a scarp, as does the inner bank.

On the north side the ground drops steeply on the north side, and the top of this steep slope has been scarped to form the defences. At the east end the bank is lightly wooded, with bracken ground cover. The first scarp is 6 - 8m high. There is then a berm 5m wide and another scarp 5m high, then another 5m wide berm. Below this the ground drops very steeply, with the lower part the steepest, into a ditch 2m wide and 1m deep on the outside. Outside the ditch is a bank 4 - 5m high on the outside which runs at a slight angle away from the hillfort, stopping about one third of the way along. There are a few small dry 'gullies' running down the slope, and about two thirds of the way along there is a gap in the top scarp and a 'gully' running diagonally across the scarps towards the north-west. The western third of this side is mainly bracken covered, with few trees. The upper scarp is 4m high, and the middle scarp becomes a bank with an internal height of 1.2m and an external height of 6m. The scarp below it also becomes a bank 0.7m high on the inside and 4m high on the outside.

On the west end the banks become tree covered again, and as they approach the entrance in the middle of the west side, become more massive. The inner bank, at the entrance, on its east side, is 2m high internally and 4 - 5m high externally. There is then a 3m wide ditch before the next bank which is 2.5m high internally and 6m high externally. There is then another 3m wide ditch before another bank 2.5m high internally. This slopes steeply for c. 1m and then flattens out, before dropping 1.5m into the last ditch. Outside this is a short streach of low bank 1m high. The entrance is in the middle of the west side and takes the form of gaps c. 2m wide in the banks and causeways across the ditches. The gaps in the banks are 1.5m deep, and the causeways are c. 1m high. Outside the banks the entrance path continues towards the west along the ridge, which here slopes gently towards the west, as a narrow gulley. To the south of it is an rectangular hollow 1.5m deep, and on the south side of this is a bank 1.5m high running east/west for a short distance. The banks, except for the small outermost one, continue south of the entrance, with very steep sides. The outer bank has a gap c. 3m wide, in it. This bank stops at the south-west corner and another bank starts just inside it. The middle bank is even more massive here, being c. 7m high on the outside.

On the south side the banks along this side are again steep sided and well preserved. In the west half of this side there are three main banks separated by ditches 3m deep and 12m wide. The top one has an internal height of c. 1m at the west end, lowering to nil further east, and an external height of 6m. The middle and lower banks have internal heights of c. 2m and external heights of 5m and 4m respectively. In the middle of the lower ditch is a small bank c. 6m wide and 0.4m high. This peters out about one third of the way along. Below the outer main bank is a shallow ditch c. 4m wide and then a low bank 1 - 1.5m high. Beyond this the ground slopes away towards the south, but not as steeply as on the north side. Towards the east the banks are slightly lower, with external heights of 5m, 3m and 3m, from the top down, and internal heights of 0.5m, 2m and 1.5m, also from the top down. The inner bank then peters out and the middle bank becomes a scarp c. 5m high. All that remains of the outer bank is a slight scarp c. 0.5m high. These continue to the south-east corner where they stop. There is a stone-built pigsty (disused) just outside the scarp here.

Outside the lower scarp, in a grass field, is a small grass covered mound, 2m high. It is roughly oval, elongated east/west. On its east side, which is very steep, below it is a ditch with Leyland cypress trees growing in it. North-east of this beyond the house and on the south-west side of the road is another oblong bank c1.5m high. It is covered with grass and young trees.

The south end of the interior is grass covered, with scattered trees. There is a derelict cottage just inside the gap on the east side. To the north-west of this is a quarry hole, now overgrown. The ground surface at this point is uneven. In the middle is a grass field. At the west end the field is grass and bracken covered and there is an inner enclosure. There is a rectangular inner enclosure at the west end of the hillfort enclosed by a simple bank. The bank is heighest at the east end, where it has an external height of 2m and an internal height of 1m. Elsewhere it has an external height of c. 1m and an internal height of 0 - 1m. There are gaps in it at the west end opposite the entrance to the fort. The interior of the inner enclosure is more or less flat.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of later prehistoric defensive organisation and settlement. The site forms an important element within the wider later prehistoric context and within the surrounding landscape. The site is well preserved and retains considerable archaeological potential. There is a strong probability of the presence of evidence relating to chronology, building techniques and functional detail.

The scheduled area comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.

Source: Cadw

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