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Somerset Historic Environment Record

23193

Site Name: New Ditch, Butleigh Wood, Butleigh
SCHEDULED MONUMENT: Linear earthwork in Butleigh Wood [No:447]
Civil Parish: Butleigh, Compton Dundon
Grid Ref: ST 5032 3309 (ST 53 SW) ST 5055 3325 (ST 53 SW)
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Public access:

The public accessibility of this site is unknown or has not been checked. Please ask locally and do not visit without permission. [Information last updated on 21 May 2003]

Details:

New Ditch is an earthwork of similar construction to Ponter's Ball and both were probably part of a more extensive scheme of defence for this portion of Somerset. Like Ponter's Ball, New Ditch also has the fosse lying to the E of the earthwork and crosses the Polden Hills at the narrowest point. It is nearly 0.5 miles in length and probably of greater extent. {1}

Consists of a bank and ditch on the SE side. On the W side of the road a S facing scarp can be traced for c40m after which it changes to a N facing scarp for a further 30m. There is no trace of a ditch here. Quarrying has taken place on this side of the road and the feature cannot be identified as part of New Ditch. As it stands "New Ditch" cannot be termed a cross-ridge dyke and although it seems to be a boundary work it has not the massive construction of Ponter's Ball. The latter is now suggested to be medieval. {3}

The earthwork is c300m long, bank 2.3m high and 9m wide with ditch 7m wide and 1-2 m deep on S side. {4}

Condition as before. {5}

The monument is in good condition with a clear ditch on the S side but is heavily wooded. {6}

References:

1 Mention - Anon. New Ditch. Somerset Archaeology and Natural History  72 (1926), lxiv
2 Mention - Grinsell, L.V 1958 "Archaeology of Wessex", 148
3 Detailed records - Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division record card ST 53 SW 20 (1978) in HER files
4 Site visit report - HBMC Field Monument Wardens report (22/3/1982). English Heritage SAM record printout in HER
5 Site visit report - HBMC Field Monument Wardens report (1/8/1986). English Heritage SAM record printout in HER
6 Detailed records - Graham, A [Alan]. English Heritage Field Monument Warden (4/8/1998) Location: HER files.

Record created in April 1985

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