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Somerset Historic Environment Record


Site Name: Elworthy Barrows hillfort, Brompton Ralph
SCHEDULED MONUMENT: Elworthy Barrows hillfort [No:35318]
Civil Parish: Brompton Ralph
PRN 15609Evaluation (1996), Elworthy Barrows hillfort, Brompton Ralph
PRN 22548Neolithic axe find, Elworthy Barrows, Brompton Ralph
PRN 22549Second World War Royal Observer Corps site, Elworthy Barrows, Brompton Ralph
Grid Ref: ST 0705 3378 (ST 03 SE)
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Image: Image of HER 33351 - Photo by Somerset County Council (05 March 1976)
  HER 33351 - Photo by Somerset County Council (05 March 1976)

Public access:

The public accessibility of this site is unknown. Please assume that this site is private property and do not visit without permission. [Information last updated on 16 December 2002]


Fragmentary remains of an approximately circular camp defended by a bank and ditch. Considerable length of bank remains on N, reduced in height, with another section on SW. Entrance gap still remains with high banks. {1}

Fine example of an unfinished hillfort in a situation where there is no defence. Enclosed in the 1830s and laid to pasture. Occasional ploughing but no deliberate attempt to destroy the rampart and infill the ditch. Last ploughed c1943 when cores, worked flakes and three leaf-shaped arrowheads were found by A.L Wedlake. Previously thought that the camp was Neolithic but no evidence for this. Causewayed effects on N side result from incomplete construction - there is a wide berm between quarry pits representing the ditch and the upcast of the rampart. E side taken a little further with a continuous weak bank and shallow ditch although the inturned entrance is well developed. S side mutilated by a field bank. W side almost complete with working sections evident. Gap in SW seems original. {2}

Many rabbit burrows on S side of the S inturn on the E side. Cow damage along the S face of the main rampart on the S side especially where this runs close to the field boundary. On the S side of this field bank the ditch and a possible outer bank and ditch were noted. Cow damage also NW of the gap on the SW side on the outer face of the rampart. {5}

Bank prominent but not continuous. Highest (3m) in the W where broad ditch and bank are 10m across. Parts of the bank are uneven and a deep pool lies in the ditch to the NE. {6}

Scheduling revised with new national number on 24 July 2002 (was Somerset 198). {8}


1 Description - Page, W. Victoria History of the County of Somerset.  Vol. 2 (1911), 508.
2 Detailed records - Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division record card. Record ID: ST 03 SE 1 (1965) Location: HER files
3 Description - Burrow, I. Hillfort and Hilltop Settlement in the First to Eighth Centuries AD.  (1981), 222-23. British Archaeological Reports 91.
4 Description - Jesson, E and Hill, D. The Iron Age and its Hill Forts.  (1971), 25-27.
5 Site visit report - Burrow, I [Ian]. Somerset County Council. (9/3/1979) Report location: HER files
6 Detailed records - HBMC Field Monument Wardens report (SCC Planning Department)
7 Measured plan - Quinnell, NV Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. Elworthy Barrows 1:8000. (1967) Drawing HBC 3/2/1, reduced photocopy in HER files. Location: HER collections.
8 Correspondence - English Heritage to Somerset County Council. (31/7/2002) Location: HER files
9 Aerial photographs - DAP TD12-14. (18/7/1990) Location: HER digital information, prints in archive at Somerset Heritage Centre.
10 Description - Quinnell, N. Untitled.  (undated) handwritten notes. Location: HER files

Record created in February 1984

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