Scheduled Monument: Sweetworthy Iron Age defended settlement (1008470)

Authority Department for Culture, Media and Sport
Other Ref SO 211; 24028
Date assigned 17 April 1951
Date last amended 17 June 1994
Date revoked
The monument includes an Iron Age defended settlement enclosure situated in the upper corner of a large natural terrace on the northern slopes of Dunkery Hill. The enclosure is formed of a bank and outer ditch surrounding a sub-circular area of 0.3ha, with the earthworks formed of almost straight sections. The interior has been levelled to form a platform. The site slopes down to the north, and the earthworks on the upper sides consist of a bank and ditch originally c.1m high and 1m deep, though now exaggerated by the formation of a pond in more modern times, and on the lower side a bank 0.4m high with external scarp 2m high and an outer terrace 6m wide. Part of the defences on the south east are missing, with only a low scarp to the interior and a small earthfast stone remaining to trace their course. It is likely that the earthworks here have been robbed to construct the later field hedge-bank which runs close by. The inner platform is defined by a curving scarp 1m high cut into the slope inside the defences on the south west, and by a scarp 1.2m high protruding above the slope inside the defences on the north east. The entrance to the interior is on the north west, where the exterior ground is level with the platformed interior, and consists of a slightly raised causeway across the ditch and a 5m wide gap between slightly inturned ends of the bank. There may have been a similar opposite entrance uphill on the robbed south east stretch, where there is a 7m gap between the end of the surviving bank and the start of the small scarp. On the south west the earthworks have been utilised probably in the 19th century to construct a pond or reservoir, now dry. A dam with a sluice has been built across the ditch, and the ditch behind recut and the bank heightened. This was fed by a leat from the south east, and tapped by a leat running north west from the ditch below. On the east of the enclosure a post-medieval trackway runs along the bottom of the ditch and has deepened it. There is a small gap in the bank on the lower side of the enclosure, probably made in more modern times for drainage. Stony mounds within the interior of the site appear to be the result of old tree root damage, but indications of occupation platforms and hollows are also present.

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Grid reference Centred SS 8905 4253 (104m by 99m) (Estimated from sources)
Map sheet SS84SE

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)