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HER Number:MDV2925
Name:Turtley Hillfort

Summary

An oval, bank and ditch defined enclosure of probable Bronze Age to Iron Age date is visible on aerial photographs of 1946 onwards and visualisations derived from lidar data captured in 2013, as extant earthworks on the north-west facing slopes overlooking the combe of the Glazebrook, immediately west of its confluence with the River Avon.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 692 586
Map Sheet:SX65NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishUgborough
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishUGBOROUGH

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX65NE/33
  • Old SAM Ref: 33763
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX65NE 39
  • Pastscape: 441207

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • HILLSLOPE ENCLOSURE (Late Bronze Age to Late Iron Age - 1000 BC to 42 AD (Between))
  • HILLFORT (Iron Age - 700 BC to 42 AD (Between))

Full description

Wall, J. C., 1906, Ancient Earthworks, 612 (Article in Monograph). SDV341465.

Turtley hillfort, elevation 500 feet. Diameter 450 feet. Known locally as the 'Roman Camp'; situated on a hill sloping down westwards towards the Glaze valley, the south side of the earthwork has disappeared, the adjoining field having been ploughed to the hedge where the perimeter was. On the south-east side is now a ditch, 8 feet wide, 3 feet deep on the outer side of a hedge. This ditch is discernable to the wood which borders on the north side of the camp. The western perimeter, the lowest on the hill, is seen only as a difference in the ground level of the field. The south-west entrance to the camp is lost in a hedge and the ploughing of the next field. Other details: Plan.

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/CPE/UK/1890, Devon County Council RAF/CPE/UK/1890 FP 1145-1146 10-DEC-1946 (Aerial Photograph). SDV169268.

An earthwork bank and ditch is visible defining an oval enclosure.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1951 - 1952, SX65NE39 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV343507.

Site visit 21st August 1951. A small oval earthwork represented by a scarp from 1 to 2 metres in height. A ditch is visible circa 1 to 1.5 metres deep. Probably Iron Age cattle enclosure.

Ordnance Survey, 1989, OS/89037, OS/89037 V 021-022 07-MAR-1989 (Aerial Photograph). SDV352115.

An earthwork bank and ditch is visible defining an oval enclosure.

Griffith, F. M., 1995, DAP/YW, 1-2 (Aerial Photograph). SDV167757.

Environment Agency, 1998-2017, LiDAR DTM data (1m resolution) EA: South Devon Coast to Dartmoor, LIDAR Environment Agency DTM 14-MAR-2013 (Cartographic). SDV361470.

An earthwork bank and ditch is identifiable defining an oval enclosure.

Dick, A. M., 1999, Untitled Source (Personal Comment). SDV343504.

Site visit 26th June 1997 (Horner and Ball). Enclosure ditch around east side recently overlain by substantial access track for telecomm mast.

Department for Culture, Media and Sport, 2001, Hilltop Enclosure at Yellowberries Copse, 430 Metres West of Higher Turtley (Schedule Document). SDV343506.

A prehistoric hilltop enclosure, located on a steep north facing hillside. It commands a high and prominent location with extensive local views, notably of several other prehistoric enclosures on Dartmoor to the north. The enclosure is ovoid, lying along the contour which is aligned north-east to south-west. The interior, which is 90 metres wide by 100 metres long, is defined by ramparts which survive best on the north and east sides. Here the bank is 8 metres wide and stands between 0.4 metres and 1 metres high, and the outer ditch is up to 10 metres wide and from 0.5 metres to 0.9 metres deep. A hedgebank follows the outer ditch along the south, east and north sides. On the south side is the original entrance, now abandoned. Here, the rampart thickens to 16 metres wide and bends into the enclosure, standing up to 1.2 metres high. While the outer ditch on the west side is obscured, the rampart is visible as a change in the slope, up to 9 metres wide and 1.8 metres high. Towards its north end, the ditch becomes visible as a terrace whose outer edge slopes steeply away down the hill. The interior slopes down steeply to the north-west with two earthwork terraces running across the site. Both are 15 metres wide and up to 2 metres high. A medieval hollow way climbs the hillside from the north and passes outside the rampart to the north-west. Here it forms part of the scheduling. All modern track surfaces and fence posts are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath is included. Other details: Map.

English Heritage, 2009, Heritage at Risk Register 2009: South West, 110 (Report - non-specific). SDV342694.

Generally satisfactory condition, but with significant localised problems.

English Heritage, 2010, Heritage at Risk Register 2010: South West, 103 (Report - non-specific). SDV344777.

English Heritage, 2011, Heritage at Risk Register 2011: South West, 108 (Report - non-specific). SDV355280.

Generally satisfactory condition, but with significant localised problems. Declining.

Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R., 2019-2020, The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping Survey. Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (AI&M, formerly NMP) (Interpretation). SDV362982.

An oval, bank and ditch defined enclosure is visible on aerial photographs of 1946 onwards and visualisations derived from lidar data captured in 2013, as extant earthworks on the north-west facing slopes overlooking the combe of the Glazebrook.
A single bank or rampart 6 to 14m wide enclosures an oval area 65m by 80m in size. A break in the bank at the south-west tip of the enclosure might be evidence of an original entrance.
An external ditch perhaps 3 to 6m wide is identifiable on the west, north and north-east side of the bank. The ditch is depicted the south and south-east side of the enclosure on late-19th and early-20th century maps, but has possibly subsequently been damaged by the creation of a modern track and is not identifiable as an earthwork on the lidar derived images.
A scarp is visible on the north-west, downslope side of the ditch, perhaps formed by a later hollow-way to skirting the north-west side of the enclosure ditch.
Little is identifiable within the enclosure beyond possible areas of terracing leading from the possible entrance to the western rampart.
Although previously recorded as a hillfort, the modest scale of the earthworks might more accurately classify this site as a hillslope enclosure.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV167757Aerial Photograph: Griffith, F. M.. 1995. DAP/YW. Devon Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). 1-2.
SDV169268Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/CPE/UK/1890. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). Devon County Council RAF/CPE/UK/1890 FP 1145-1146 10-DEC-1946.
SDV341465Article in Monograph: Wall, J. C.. 1906. Ancient Earthworks. Victoria History of the County of Devon. Hardback Volume. 612.
SDV342694Report - non-specific: English Heritage. 2009. Heritage at Risk Register 2009: South West. English Heritage Report. A4 Bound +Digital. 110.
SDV343504Personal Comment: Dick, A. M.. 1999.
SDV343506Schedule Document: Department for Culture, Media and Sport. 2001. Hilltop Enclosure at Yellowberries Copse, 430 Metres West of Higher Turtley. The Schedule of Monuments. A4 Stapled.
SDV343507Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1951 - 1952. SX65NE39. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV344777Report - non-specific: English Heritage. 2010. Heritage at Risk Register 2010: South West. English Heritage Report. Digital. 103.
SDV352115Aerial Photograph: Ordnance Survey. 1989. OS/89037. Ordnance Survey. Photograph (Paper). OS/89037 V 021-022 07-MAR-1989.
SDV355280Report - non-specific: English Heritage. 2011. Heritage at Risk Register 2011: South West. english Heritage. Digital. 108.
SDV361470Cartographic: Environment Agency. 1998-2017. LiDAR DTM data (1m resolution) EA: South Devon Coast to Dartmoor. Environment Agency LiDAR data. Digital. LIDAR Environment Agency DTM 14-MAR-2013. [Mapped feature: #86441 ]
SDV362982Interpretation: Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R.. 2019-2020. The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping Survey. Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (AI&M, formerly NMP). Historic England Research Report. Digital.

Associated Monuments: none recorded

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV8098 - The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping (formerly NMP) Survey, Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (Ref: ACD2040)

Date Last Edited:Apr 7 2020 5:41PM