MSO8657 - Iron Age oval enclosure on Rodhuish Common (Monument)


A small oval enclosure is probably of Iron Age date. It measures 31.7 metres by 28.3 metres, and is defined by a stony bank 0.6 metres high. It was very overgrown with scrub in 1998.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

'New' hill-forts and enclosures on Exmoor. Croydon Hill, S.E. of Minehead. [A - see MSO8628] National Grid Reference 995 392. [B - MSO8657, this record]. [B] "We spent so much time trying to find [A] that we did not have time to ground-check [B], which looks as though it pairs with it on the principle of Hawkes' hill forts with pastoral enclosures within half a mile." [1] 'B' at SS 99893923, is situated well down a slope. It is a circular levelled area with an inward facing scarp on the upper (northwestern) side andan outward facing scarp on the southeastern side. The maximum height of these scarps is 0.9 metres. A gap in the northwest is almost certainly modern as it faces uphill and would lead to flooding. The construction entailed considerable effort to level the interior but both purpose and date are obscure. May be Iron age or perhaps later. Surveyed at 1:2500. [2] (SS 9989 3923) Earthwork (NR). [3] At SS 9989 3223 there is a roughly circular enclosure of approximately 35 metres in diameter. The bank is wide and shallow and what appears to be an entrance can be seen on the north side. [4] At SS 99890 39225 is a small oval enclosure of presumed Iron Age date. It lies on steep southeast facing slopes near the bottom of Rodhuish Common. It measures 31.7 metres north to south by 28.3 metres west to east. It is defined by a stony bank averaging 0.6 metres high on all sides except the west: here it is marked by a 1.7 metre high cut into the natural slopes. The enclosure is very overgrown with low scrub, thorn and silver birch. As a result it is not possible to discern subtleties in the earthworks or to identify evidence for internal settlement. [6-8] SS 9990 3922. Earthwork enclosure of probable Iron Age date on Rodhuish Common. Monument Scheduled on 11 August 2003. [9] The enclosure was seen as an earthwork and mapped from aerial photographs. It lies 450 metres from another enclosure to the west on Monkslade Common (MSO8628). Both are surrounded by the remnants of a probable post-medieval field system (MSO7489) with low field banks and traces of cultivation marks. [4,10] The Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment of 2009 gave the site a survival score of 7. [11] The site was surveyed in May 2015 as part of the 2015 Exmoor Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment. It was given a survival score of 9. [12] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [13,14]

Sources/Archives (14)

  • <1> Unpublished document: Grinsell, L. V.. Letters. 18 November and 1 December 1959.
  • <2> Unpublished document: PALMER, JP. Mid 1960s. Field Investigators Comments. Ordnance Survey visit, F1, 25 August 1965.
  • <3> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1980. 1:10000 Map, 1980. 1:10000.
  • <4> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. RAF CPE/UK/1980/3287-9 (11 April 1947).
  • <5> Survey: Western Archaeological Trust. 1980s. Exmoor Aerial Photograph Survey. 9939.
  • <6> Technical drawing: Wilson-North, R. and Riley, H.. 1998-1999. Rodhuish Common Enclosure/pencil survey. Unknown. Permatrace. Pencil.
  • <7> Technical drawing: Riley, H. and Wilson-North, R.. 1998-1999. Rodhuish Common Enclosure/ink survey. 1:500. Permatrace. Pen and Ink.
  • <8> Unpublished document: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. Field Investigators Comment. R Wilson-North, H Riley and L King, 4 June 1998.
  • <9> Unpublished document: English Heritage. 20/8/2003. English Heritage to Somerset County Council.
  • <10> Collection: RCHME: Brendon Hills Mapping Project, SS93NE.
  • <11> Report: Bray, L.S.. 2010. Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment 2009, Exmoor National Park.
  • <12> Report: Gent, T. and Manning, P.. 2015. Exmoor National Park Scheduled Monument Condition Survey 2015. Archaedia.
  • <13> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1139717, Extant 26 April 2022.
  • <14> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 36609, Extant 26 April 2022.

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO1084
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO11701
  • Local List Status (Rejected)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 93 NE6
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 93 NE90
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1139717
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 36609
  • Somerset SMR PRN: 34260



Grid reference Centred SS 99898 39223 (50m by 45m)
Map sheet SS93NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (2)

Related Events/Activities (2)

Record last edited

Apr 26 2022 2:11PM


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