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Somerset Historic Environment Record


Site Name: Roddenbury Hillfort, Longleat Wood, Selwood
SCHEDULED MONUMENT: Hillfort on Roddenbury Hill [No:24020]
Civil Parish: Selwood
Grid Ref: ST 798 439 (ST 74 SE)
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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]


Occupies a prominent position on a hilltop. Appears on APs to have been of triangular plan but only on the E side is the rampart and ditch well preserved. There is a short section of denuded rampart on the W, elsewhere the fort has been destroyed by earth digging. Uncertain as to whether the gap for a bridle way in the W side is an original feature although no approach from the W is relatively easy. {1}

W side defences almost obliterated. On the E and N the defences are in good condition, the bank rising c5m from the bottom of the ditch on the E. {2}

A large univallate hillfort on the triangular tip of a hill. Curvilinear, forming a round-cornered triangle with one side facing the hilltop to the east and the other sides running around the natural contour behind, enclosing 0.84ha. The defences across the ridge are most massive, with a bank up to 1.6m high and a ditch up to 1.8m deep below. Elsewhere the bank is up to 0.4m high though absent in places, with a drop of up to 1.8m to a broad terrace. On the NE there is a gap between the end of the ditch and the end of the terrace. On the SW the site has been disturbed by sand quarrying, probably C19. The entrance to the fort is on the east on top of the ridge, with a broad causeway over the ditch and a gap in the rampart, slightly inturned on the S. The interior of the fort, like the rest of the hill, is covered with shallow sand-digging hollows. On the SW side, the ramparts survive more completely than previously mapped, below the level of the quarrying. {8}

Scheduling revised with new national number 16 August 1994 (was Somerset 434). {10}

Within beech woodland and fairly stable. A single badger sett is present in the rampart at the NE corner. Mountain bikes tracks are visible but do not appear to be causing erosion yet. On the SE side, however, there appears to be a backfilled excavation trench. {11}


1 Detailed records - Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division record card. Record ID: ST 74 SE 2 (1965) Location: HER files.
2 Description - Burrow, I. Hillfort and Hilltop Settlement in the First to Eighth Centuries AD.  (1981) British Archaeological Reports 91.
3 Sketch plan - Page, W. Victoria History of the County of Somerset.  Vol. 2 (1911), 510.
4 Mention - Grinsell, LV. The Archaeology of Wessex.  (1958), 165.
5 Aerial photographs - RAF CPE/UK/2279 5070-5071. (September 1947) Location: Somerset Studies at Somerset Heritage Centre.
6 Aerial photographs - RAF CPE/UK/2336 5077. (October 1947) Location: Somerset Studies at Somerset Heritage Centre.
7 Mention - Burrow, EJ. Ancient Earthworks and Camps of Somerset.  (1924), 110.
8 Detailed records - Preece, A. Hillfort on Roddenbury Hill.  (1993) unpublished Monuments Protection Programme report for English Heritage. Location: Verbal, electronic or direct entry, no source retained.
9 Measured plan - Preece, A. English Heritage. Roddenbury Hillfort 1:2500. (1993) Location: HER files.
10 Correspondence - English Heritage to Somerset County Council. (15/9/1994) Location: HER files.
11 Detailed records - Graham, A [Alan]. English Heritage Field Monument Warden (22/7/1998) Location: HER files.

Record created in October 1985

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