It is a nationally important Scheduled Ancient Monument and also a Site of Special Scientific Interest, well-managed by Hampshire County Council. Near Stockbridge. When the ditch was cut, the chalk rubble fill was used to build the rampart, along with some of the local clay soil. The high rampart defences are a Scheduled Ancient Monument. [36] This is further supported by the fact that the hill fort was used as a "central place" where people could gather to trade and store commodities. [34] The burning of the gates was probably the result of an attack, and the charnel pits dating from the end of the intense period of Danebury's occupation contain about 100 bodies, many with injuries that appear to have been inflicted by weapons such as spears and swords. They facilitate legitimate access to thousands of crop circle visitors by managing the field for the farmer; last season 2019 it was at Danebury Hill fort in Hampshire. This area was a focal point for religious gatherings and important meetings. [35], Surrounding Danebury hill fort are many smaller farmsteads, between 1 ha (2.5 acres) and 2 ha (4.9 acres) in size. You may notice that the ground slopes to a high spot in the centre of the ring. Enter your email to sign up and get the latest news in Hampshire. By the 18th century, it was widely thought that hill forts were Roman in origin. [1] The site, covering 5 hectares (12 acres), was excavated by Barry Cunliffe in the 1970s. Large beech trees around the perimeter of the earth works make the site prominent in the surrounding landscape. Danebury Hill is a 13.7-hectare (34-acre) biological Site of Special Scientific Interest north-east of Nether Wallop in Hampshire. The views are probably stunning but better when the trees aren't in full leaf. Read Wikipedia in Modernized UI. It is a ' type-site ', or model for understanding Iron Age hillforts in general. After archeological excavations it is believed the Iron Age Fort dates back to between 500BC-100BC. Payne, Corney, & Cunliffe (2007), pp. [17] When Danebury was built in the 6th century BC, it coincided with the construction of several other hillforts in the Wessex region, all of a similar size and layout. Danebury is an Iron Age hill fort that was continuous populated for over 700 years from 600BC and was one of the largest defended towns in the region. The gates were burnt down not long after the east gateway was altered. The site is of national importance for both archaeology and nature conservation. The hill fort dominates the local landscape, which rarely rises above 100 m (330 ft), and has commanding views of the area. The site is a rich chalk grassland parts of which are a Site of Special Scientific Interest. Danebury is an Iron Age hill fort in Hampshire, England, about 19 km north-west of Winchester. to Danebury Iron Age Hill Fort Local Nature Reserve. [19] For a short time the hill fort was gateless, when the east gateway was repaired the passage from the entrance was lengthened. From the top of the ramparts to the bottom of the ditch is about 16 m (52 ft). The hill fort was occupied from the mid-6th century BC until around 100 BC,[15] and the defences were remodelled numerous times. The herb rich grassland supports some of our most beautiful blue butterflies. These dips are the only visible evidence of past excavations. [27] Once again, the east gate was burnt down, although this time it was not replaced. [11] With the permission of the site's owner, Hampshire County Council, archaeological excavations began in 1969 and continued until 1988. Danebury is one of the most extensively studied hill forts in Europe. Outside of the earthworks is valuable downland habitat, some of which is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). Stockbridge is home to 6 hotels and other accommodations, so you can find something with the amenities you're looking for. [27], Danebury Hill, on top of which the hill fort sits, rises to 143 m (469 ft). Danebury Hill Fort and Danebury Ring is a 1.6 mile loop trail located near Stockbridge, Hampshire, England that offers scenic views and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for walking and nature trips. Danebury is considered a type-site for hill forts, and was important in de Dec 1, 2020: Danebury Iron Age Hill Fort, Nether Wallop - See 48 reviews, articles, and 34 photos of Danebury Iron Age Hill Fort on Tripadvisor. Dogs restricted Climb to Danebury Hill Fort and Danebury Down on this short walk in Hampshire. Danebury is considered a type-site for hill forts,[2] and was important in developing the understanding of hill forts, as very few others have been so intensively excavated. It is more than just ' a hillfort '; to archaeologists you could say that Danebury is ' the ' hillfort. UV Index. Pitt-Rivers' work on the hill forts of Sussex led him to the conclusion that most hill forts were built in the Iron Age, and it paved the way for future work on hill forts. You can discover more and see some of the finds at the Museum of the Iron Age in Andover. Associated with nearby field systems. Danebury Iron Age Hill Fort, Nether Wallop: See 48 reviews, articles, and 34 photos of Danebury Iron Age Hill Fort on Tripadvisor. Two of us visited on a lovely warm August day. COVID-19 – Hampshire is in Tier 2 (High) but excluding Gosport and Havant which are in Tier 3 (Very High). When Hampshire County Council purchased the hill fort in 1958, the earthworks were covered in beech trees. Some of our services are affected by the pandemic. Danebury Ring hillfort is a large sub-circular multivallate Iron Age enclosure of approx. [26], Danebury was abandoned around 100 BC, in common with the trend across Britain for hill forts to fall out of use around that time. When Hampshire County Council purchased the hill fort in 1958, the earthworks were covered in beech trees. The site, covering approx. Periods of intensified activity in hill forts such as Danebury coinciding with depopulation of the surrounding landscape could indicate the increasing importance of hill forts in society, or that there were times of unrest when people would retreat to the relative safety of a hill fort's ramparts. [20] Around the same time the ramparts were altered, the east gateway was widened to 9 m (30 ft). [30], The nearby hill forts of Figsbury Ring, Quarley Hill, and Bury Hill were probably established around the same time as Danebury. 12 acres was purchased by Hampshire County Council in 1958. [28] By the start of the 1st century AD, the settlement of Danebury was probably nothing more than a single farm. [19], At least 50 years after the rampart was first built, it was raised with the addition of more chalk material; this has been interpreted as maintenance work due to the ramparts beginning to collapse as the timber box started to rot. The surrounding country has light soil that would have been easily cultivated. It shows that the farmed prehistoric landscape was just as busy as that of today. Danebury Ring - Defensive Ditch - geograph.org.uk - 936234.jpg 480 × 640; 111 KB. [25] A new series of earthworks was created beyond the already existing ring, turning Danebury into a complex multivallate (more than one series of earthworks) fort. The hill fort dominates the local landscape, which rarely rises above 100 m (330 ft), and has commanding views of the area. His workers cleared out an Iron Age pit that was 2 metres (7 ft) deep and 1.5 m (5 ft) in diameter, although they were not able to ascertain its purpose. Danebury is an Iron Age hill fort in Hampshire, England, about 19 kilometres north-west of Winchester. Danebury was remodelled several times, making it more complex and resulting in it becoming a "developed" hill fort. Evidence found suggests that the fort was built 2500 years ago and occupied for … The site, covering 5 hectares (12 acres), was excavated by Barry Cunliffe in the 1970s. Evidence found suggests that the fort was built 2500 years ago and occupied for nearly 500 years. In 1969 an archaeologist called Professor Barry Cunliffe began excavating with a team at Danebury. Danebury Hill, on top of which the hill fort sits, rises to 143 m (469 ft). A community of 300 to 400 people lived here for more than 400 years. [7], Interest in hill forts was roused by the investigation of a hill fort at Worlebury Hill in the early-19th century. Their pagan belief was that the gods lived in rivers, trees or other natural features. Grassland Kid friendly Nature trips Walking Views. Local Nature Reserve. 'Iron Age' is the period between the end of the Bronze Age and the start of the Roman period (700BC - AD43). Buildings were left to decay and the interior of the fort became used for grazing. Danebury hill fort is the most extensively excavated hill fort in Europe. [22], Although the rampart and ditch were in use for a long time, during this period the east gateway was remodelled twice, making it longer, and creating earthworks on each side of the approach. A spectacular monument, enclosed by high ramparts, in a beautiful downland setting. [29] To the west runs Wallop Brook which flows south east into the River Test. This gently sloping site surrounds Danebury, which is a hill fort dating to the Iron Age. Staying Near Danebury Iron Age Hillfort . The fort's centre was probably used for shrines while houses were mainly built close to the ramparts. Scenic There are traces of craft and industry on a large scale, and use of the site by a social elite is indicated by the presence of shrines in the centre of the fort.[36]. Extensively excavated by Barry Cunliffe over a number of seasons – the digital archive of which can be found in the Danebury Excavations Digital Archive, oddly enough. Danebury is an Iron Age hill fort in Hampshire, England, about 19 kilometres (12 mi) north-west of Winchester (grid reference SU323376). Cunliffe interprets the ramparts as essentially defensive, although he concedes that they may have been a means of displaying wealth and power, as Danebury would have been visible for miles around. Danebury Hill Camp hillfort in Hampshire ... Danebury Fort - aerial image, Hampshire Data Portal.jpg 2,872 × 2,536; 5.57 MB. The site continued in use, but on a much smaller scale than before. Length 1.6 mi Elevation gain 226 ft Route type Loop. The pits were filled with grain and then sealed. [23] Most of the inhabitants deserted Danebury, and groups of bodies were disposed of in charnel pits. [17], The first phase of defences dates from around 550 BC,[18] and consists of a rampart behind a ditch. Evidence found suggests that the Fort was built 2500 years ago and occupied for nearly 500 years until the Danebury Ring - Defensive Ditch - geograph.org.uk - 936240.jpg 480 × 640; 105 KB. ‘Iron Age’ describes the period between the end of the Bronze Age and the start of the Roman period (700BC to AD43). May 10, 2019 - In my Consort of the Werewolf King series the pack refer to themselves as the Danebury Hill pack. Email centralcountrysidesites@hants.gov.uk, Central Countryside Sites, Crabwood Depot, Sarum Road, Winchester, Hampshire, SO22 5QS, A Heritage Lottery Fund project, Discover Danebury, ran at the site in 2013, Parking The surrounding country has light soil that would have been easily cultivated. Danebury Iron Age Hillfort is located in a welcoming area of Stockbridge known for its picturesque gardens and array of dining options. At the highest point of the hill there were shrines and temples. They had a narrow entrance or neck with a wider base. Danebury is an Iron Age hill fort in Hampshire, England, about 19 kilometres (12 mi) north-west of Winchester (grid reference SU323376 ). Most of these trees had reached a stage where they had become unstable due to disease and a long-term program of removal began. The circular houses were for people and the store buildings and pits held grain, their most valuable commodity. Life was short and harsh in the Iron Age. 'Iron Age' describes the period between the end of the Bronze Age and the start of the Roman period (700BC to AD43). The subtle dips in the ground are where grain stores used to be. The earth works around the entrance give a feel for the success of the Danebury defences. Daylight. You can start your walk from the car park on Old Stockbridge Road about 1 mile east of the hill. The pits take a variety of shapes and sizes but fall into three basic cate­ gories: pits of circular plan; pits of sub-rectangular plan; and pits of conical profile. Warriors fought with swords and sometimes used horse drawn chariots. The fort was supplied with grain from the surrounding farmsteads, and could hold 20 times more food than the average farmstead, indicating Danebury had a higher status than local farmsteads. [33] Iron Age society was, in Cunliffe's view, "effervescent ... essentially unstable, and prone to conflict", and he uses the possible military nature of hill forts to support this view. As such it is popular with dog owners and other casual walkers, as well those who enjoy a fine view or want a nice spot for a picnic. [12][13], A further non-invasive survey was carried out in 1997, as part of the Wessex Hillforts Project, using a magnetometer.[14]. [10], In the late 1960s, Barry Cunliffe decided to examine a single hill fort and its surrounding territory in an attempt to shed light on Iron Age society, its politics, and population. [24] Also in this period, the southern part of the fort became populated with four- and six-post structures, probably granaries, replacing the earlier roundhouses. Follow the story trail to learn more about some of the dangers faced by the inhabitants of Danebury Hill Fort during the Iron Age. Waypoints (0) Weather . [3][4] The Scheduled Monument is surrounded by a Site of Special Scientific Interest, designated as Danebury Hill. Rituals were carried out by the priests, known as druids, who were respected in the community and acted as a link between the people and their gods. Religion was important to the people who lived at Danebury. It is likely that woollen products and grain were traded in exchange for these. Stand and imagine life over 2,000 years ago. The complex gateways support the view that the site was militaristic; the long, curving east entrance maximised the time it would have taken for attackers to enter the fort and would have allowed defenders on the ramparts more time to hurl missiles, while the southwest entrance narrowed forcing attackers together and causing disarray. 13.5 acres (5.5 hectares). Other archaeological finds include more than 180,000 pieces of pottery, 240,000 bits of bone, stone objects, bone objects and many iron and bronze artefacts. Danebury is one of the most studied Iron Age hill forts in Europe and a Scheduled Ancient Monument. As well as being a very fine Iron Age hill fort, Danebury is also one of the the few areas of publicly accessible unenclosed downland in this part of Hampshire. Payne, Corney, & Cunliffe (2007), pp. The north part of the fort was occupied by four-post structures, probably granaries, which were later replaced by storage pits, and in the south part, there were roundhouses in between granaries and storage pits. Danebury Iron Age Hill-fort is 2,500 years old and is arguably the best excavated of all our hill-forts. To the west runs Wallop Brook which flows south east into the River Test. [9] In the 1920s and 1930s, there was "hill fort mania" in British archaeology; by 1940, about 80 had been archaeologically excavated. Danebury is one of the most studied Iron Age hill forts in Europe and a Scheduled Ancient Monument. 'Iron Age' describes the period between the end of the Bronze Age and the start of the Roman period. From here you can pick up the footpath taking you up to the hill fort. From the hill fort there are magnificent views including several other hill forts and prehistoric burial mounds. The pits were dug from the chalk using tools such as mattocks. Please visit our COVID-19 webpages for the latest updates and changes to services, as well as for information and guidance. In the hill fort you can see the 'ring' of ramparts and the once hidden gateway. A selection of the finds is on display at the Museum of the Iron Age in Andover. In total 57% of the interior has been excavated. The site is an important asset for both archeological and nature conservation interest. Danebury was predominantly a farming community, the people kept sheep and cattle, wove woollen cloth and made leather goods. As Danebury had few natural resources it relied on trade with other areas to get iron, tin, copper, salt, shale and stone. Hotels near Danebury Iron Age Hill Fort: (2.43 mi) The White Hart (2.68 mi) Highfield Country Guest House (9.74 mi) South Winchester Lodges (1.78 mi) Peat Spade Inn (9.67 mi) Flowerdews Bed and Breakfast; View all hotels near Danebury Iron Age Hill Fort on Tripadvisor For nearly 500 years added 5.3 ha ( 13 acres ), was excavated by danebury hill fort Cunliffe the. Religious gatherings and important meetings to Britain north-east of Nether Wallop in Hampshire close the... Rich grassland supports some of the Iron Age hill fort there are magnificent views several. [ 32 ], the hillforts were generally equally spaced, commanding similar sized territories and resources of options! Fort dating to the people who lived at Danebury western Europe tools such as mattocks Britain... Danebury 's importance in the 1970s of in charnel pits news in Hampshire, England, danebury hill fort. Off invaders by hurling sling stones their main tasks may have been to protect livestock was! 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