Hillfort: OS Grid Reference – SU 863 657
Archaeology & History
Described by Steve Ford (1987) as “the only known example of a hillfort in East Berkshire,” this much overgrown site encloses an area covering 7.8 hectares. It was first started around 700 BC and thought to be a northern outpost for the Atrebates tribe. However, just over the northern edge of the ramparts, less than half a mile away, a group of seven round barrows were once in evidence, indicating that the the flat plateau on which the hillfort stands would have been of use prior to its construction (Hawkes 1973). The site is described as follows:
“The earthworks consist of a single bank and ditch on the northwest, while elsewhere there is an additional outer bank. At the southern side, the ramparts include a second ditch and a third bank… At present there are four entrances: north, south, east and west, but it would seem that only the eastern and western entrances are contemporary with the construction of the hillfort.”
Archaeologists discovered that the site was made use of by the Romans when their mob arrived, as a coin of Cunobelin as well as Roman pottery was uncovered — although it has to be said that, as a Roman road passes by a short distance to the south, so such finds would be expected.
- Ford, Steve, East Berkshire Archaeological Survey, Berkshire County Council 1987.
- Hawkes, Jacquetta, Prehistoric and Roman Monuments in England and Wales, BCA: London 1973.
© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian