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HER Number (PRN):01164
Name:Castle Ditches earthwork at Bedstone Hill
Type of Record:Monument
Protected Status:Scheduled Monument 1021066: Castle Ditches

Monument Types


Scheduled Monument: A good example of a small enclosed settlement of Iron Age or Romano-British origin, of particular interest because of the survival of both the enclosure earthworks and interior building platforms (most sites of this type have been ploughed out).

Parish:Bedstone, South Shropshire, Shropshire
Map Sheet:SO37NE
Grid Reference:SO 3536 7594

Related records: None recorded

Associated Finds: None recorded

Associated Events

  • ESA1552 - 1970 field observation by English Heritage
  • ESA1553 - 1973 field observation by the Ordnance Survey
  • ESA1554 - 1981 field observation by Shropshire County Council
  • ESA1555 - 1985 field observation by English Heritage


Sub rectangular enclosure with rounded corners, measuring 90m E/W by 50m transversely and is bounded on the N, the weakest side by double banks with a medial ditch, and on the S, where natural slopes fall away steeply, by a ditch with an outer bank. The double banks may have continued all around the enclosure, but on the west side, only the inner bank remains, and on the E side only the outer. Through this side is the original entrance causewayed across the ditch. The banks are nowhere more than 0.3m in height externally nor stand over 1.2m from the foot of the ditch, which averages 0.7m in depth . Both banks and ditch average 7m in width. The site is under pasture but has been reduced and spread by ploughing. Interior contains several stone pits. ( scoops). OS FI 1973 <1>

Evaluated for MPP in 1990-1, Medium score as one of 30 Upland Enclosures <7>

Scheduling revised in 2003. Scheduling description: ->

-> The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a small enclosed settlement, known as Castle Ditches, which is either Iron Age or Romano- British in origin. It is situated on gently sloping ground on top of a ridge which forms part of Bedstone Hill. From this location there are views of the neighbouring hills, and the Clun and Teme river valleys to south east. ->

-> The settlement takes the form of a quadrangular enclosure. Its overall dimensions are approximately 80m north-south by 118m east-west, and its internal area is about 0.4ha. The earthworks which define the interior of the settlement have been partially modified by ploughing in the mid-20th century, and the north eastern corner has been truncated by a road. Along the western, northern and eastern sides there is an inner bank, approximately 7m wide and 0.5m high, bounded by an external ditch also about 7m wide, visible as a shallow depression. On the northern and eastern sides the ditch is defined by an outer bank, about 7m wide and 0.5m in height. Along the southern side of the enclosure there are no visible indications of an inner bank. Here, the ditch has been cut into the slope and its northern face is marked by a pronounced scarp between 1.2m and 1.8m high. Material excavated from the ditch has been used to form an outer (counterscarp) bank, about 7m wide. The eastern half of this bank stands to a height of 0.5m, but to the west it has been partially levelled by ploughing. The entrance to the settlement is on the eastern side. Here, the ends of the inner bank turn inward to form an entrance passage about 5m wide. Within the interior of the enclosure are a number of well-defined platforms cut into the sloping ground, which provided level areas for the construction of buildings. ->

-> The modern road surface is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it is included. <8>

Record of management issues and reccommendation made in c.1996. <11>

Photographed during aerial photographic survey in 2010. <13>

The ditches and a number of internal features are visible on the LiDAR hillshade. <14>

<00> Shropshire County Council SMR, Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards, SMR Card for PRN SA 01164 (Card index). SSA20722.

<01a> Victoria County History, 1908, Victoria County History 1, p378 (Volume). SSA178.

<01> Ordnance Survey, 1973, Ordnance Survey Record Card SO37NE36 (Card index). SSA4622.

<02> Musson Chris R, 1989-Jun-23, CPAT 89/MB/0598 to 0599 (2 photos) (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA17143.

<03> Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission (HBMC), 1986, Scheduled Monument Report on SAM 25927 (Field Monument Warden Report). SSA4624.

<04> Tyler Alan W, 1981-Feb-12, Site Visit Form, 12/02/1981 (Field recording form). SSA4625.

<05> Department of the Environment (DoE), 1972, Map of Scheduled area, 1972 (Scheduled Monument notification). SSA4623.

<06> Tyler Alan W, 1981-Jan/Feb, Castle Ditches (Photograph). SSA12867.

<07> Horton Wendy B, 1990/ 1991, MPP Evaluation File (TEXT). SSA20084.

<08> English Heritage, 2003, Scheduling Papers (Revised Scheduling, 08/09/2003) (Scheduled Monument notification). SSA21235.

<09> Musson Chris R, 2003-Aug-30, CPAT 03/MB/0066 to 0067 (2 photos) (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA21754.

<10> Musson Chris R, 2003-Aug-30, CPAT 03/CP/0607 (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA21788.

<11> Leigh Judith, 1996, The Clun environmentally sensitive area: management plans for Scheduled Ancient Monuments (Management report). SSA23415.

<12> Newman J & Pevsner N, 2006, Buildings of England: Shropshire, p141 (Monograph). SSA23518.

<13> Shropshire Council, 2010-Mar-7, SA1004_236 to SA1004_239 (4 photos) Flight: 10_SA_04 (Oblique aerial photograph). SSA26647.

<14> Environment Agency, 2014, LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) Hillshade Model (Geospatial data). SSA24735.


[00]SSA20722 - Card index: Shropshire County Council SMR. Site and Monuments Record (SMR) cards. SMR record cards. SMR Card for PRN SA 01164.
[01a]SSA178 - Volume: Victoria County History. 1908. Victoria County History 1. Victoria County History of Shropshire. Vol 1. p378.
[01]SSA4622 - Card index: Ordnance Survey. 1973. Ordnance Survey Record Card SO37NE36 . Ordnance Survey record cards. SO37NE36 .
[02]SSA17143 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 1989-Jun-23. CPAT 89/MB/0598 to 0599 (2 photos). Black and White. Medium.
[03]SSA4624 - Field Monument Warden Report: Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission (HBMC). 1986. Scheduled Monument Report on SAM 25927.
[04]SSA4625 - Field recording form: Tyler Alan W. 1981-Feb-12. Site Visit Form, 12/02/1981. SMR site visit form.
[05]SSA4623 - Scheduled Monument notification: Department of the Environment (DoE). 1972. Map of Scheduled area, 1972.
[06]SSA12867 - Photograph: Tyler Alan W. 1981-Jan/Feb. Castle Ditches. Black and white. 35mm.
[07]SSA20084 - TEXT: Horton Wendy B. 1990/ 1991. MPP Evaluation File.
[08]SSA21235 - Scheduled Monument notification: English Heritage. 2003. Scheduling Papers (Revised Scheduling, 08/09/2003). 34936.
[09]SSA21754 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 2003-Aug-30. CPAT 03/MB/0066 to 0067 (2 photos). Black and White. Medium.
[10]SSA21788 - Oblique aerial photograph: Musson Chris R. 2003-Aug-30. CPAT 03/CP/0607.
[11]SSA23415 - Management report: Leigh Judith. 1996. The Clun environmentally sensitive area: management plans for Scheduled Ancient Monuments. English Heritage.
[12]SSA23518 - Monograph: Newman J & Pevsner N. 2006. Buildings of England: Shropshire. Buildings of England. p141.
[13]SSA26647 - Oblique aerial photograph: Shropshire Council. 2010-Mar-7. SA1004_236 to SA1004_239 (4 photos) Flight: 10_SA_04. Colour. Digital.
[14]SSA24735 - Geospatial data: Environment Agency. 2014. LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) Hillshade Model.
Date Last Edited:Sep 7 2016 4:44PM