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Midsummer Hill Camp

SMR Number
: 931
Grid Reference
: SO 761 374
Parish
: EASTNOR, HEREFORDSHIRE

No description or bibliographical details transferred from Superfile.
Excavation reports. (1)(2) Occupies the summit of Midsummer and Holybush Hills. Covers area of about 30 acres and is of irregular form generally following the contours. Entirely surrounded by double rampart with medial ditch and slight spoil ditch within inner rampart. Two main entrances that are approached by current trackway while inner rampart one is turned inwards slightly at the gap. Second entrance is in the angle formed by a small valley. The outer rampart is gapped but the inner rampart is turned inwards on both sides. There are now three other entraces. Within the enclosure are still to be seen a number of rounded hollows generally about 6 metres in diameter which represent hut sites. The SE slope of the summit of Midsummer Hill is said to have a series of 11 terraces on which over 200 hut sites could be traced as late as 1875. A few of these are still visible. Immediately to the west of the north entrace is a raised platform proved on excavation to be the site of a large hut. Traces of a second plaform are east of the entrance. To the SW of the main enclosure are lines of entrenchment, the Red Earls Dyke and a slight rampart towards the west. The latter has traces of ditches east of the inner side and curves around to the east at the south end. It is uncertain if this formed an outer enclosure but in 1875 40 hut sites could be traced within the area. Excavation at several points in 1924 in main enclosure. La Tene pottery. (1-15). The likelihood of pre-hillfort earthworks and earlier enclousres existing is high. Many of the isolated depressions could be of an earlier period and any one of the terraces, particularly the higher ones may represent the line of a former enclosure on Midsummer Hill. A bank circling the main hillfort can be traced, underlying the hillfort defences. Looking at the relationship with the Shire Ditch (30819, 3798) it is suggested that the first phase is Late Bronze Age. Why the hillfort should be placed so close to the Herefordshire Beacon (within 2km) or so many houses located in such an extremely windy spot is unclear. Settlement seems to be within the confines of the hillfort. Finds of iron nails and potsherds by Stanford suggest the presence of small scale Romano-British or later activity within the hillfort. The kind of population proposed by Stanford (1500 to 2200 people) can only be confirmed, if based on the number of huts. (17) Descriptive report on the third season of work organised by the Malvern Hills Archaeological Committee in cooperation with the Woolhope Club and the Worcester Archaeological Society. There was evidence in the southern entrance of a succession of gateway repairs. Inside the rampart it was revealed how stone lined sumps had been used to collect water from a shallow pool. Two major rampart-building episodes were revealed. Evidence of buildings showed them to be small and rectangular and having been re built many times. Excavations were directed by Mr. SC Stanford, University of Birmingham, Dept. of Extra Mural Studies.(18) Summary of the first full season of excavations directed by SC. Stanford. (19)

Monument Type(s)

  1. HILLFORT (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)

Associated Files

    Sources and Further Reading

    1. <1>SHE12713 - Bibliographic reference: Stanford, S C. 1981. Midsummer Hill. privately published.
    2. <1>SHE132 - Bibliographic reference: Royal Commission on Historical Monuments. 1932. Inventory of Monuments, Herefordshire East, Vol II. Herefordshire East, Volume II.
    3. <2>SHE9232 - Bibliographic reference: Hughes, I T. 1924. Report on the Excavations at Midsummer Hill, Herefordshire. Transactions of the Woolhope Naturalists' Field Club. pp.18-27.
    4. <2>SHE9792 - Graphic material: Lines, H H. 1870. Midsummer Hill Camp.
    5. <5>SHE12641 - Bibliographic reference: Stanford, S C. 1981. Midsummer Hill excavations 65-70.
    6. <6>SHE2235 - Bibliographic reference: Walters, H B. 1908. Romano-British Herefordshire (pp 167-199). The Victoria History of the County of Hereford edited by William Page, Vol I.
    7. <7>SHE5797 - Bibliographic reference: VCH. 1906. Worcestershire. Victoria County History.
    8. <8>SHE14104 - Bibliographic reference: West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter. Midsummer Hill. West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter 8.
    9. <9>SHE14105 - Bibliographic reference: West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter. Midsummer Hill. West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter 9.
    10. <10>SHE14106 - Bibliographic reference: West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter. Midsummer Hill. West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter 10.
    11. <11>SHE14107 - Bibliographic reference: West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter. Midsummer Hill. West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter 11.
    12. <12>SHE14107 - Bibliographic reference: West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter. Midsummer Hill. West Midlands Archaeology Newsletter 11.
    13. <13>SHE12644 - Bibliographic reference: Stanford, S C. 1973. The Malvern Hillforts.
    14. <14>SHE14109 - Bibliographic reference: Forde Johnstane. 1976. Hillforts of Iron Age in England and Wales. not stated.
    15. <15>SHE9186 - Bibliographic reference: Hogg, A. 1979. Hillforts, an Index. British Hillforts An Index.
    16. <16>SHE14110 - Bibliographic reference: Hawkens. 1931. Midsummer Hill. Antiquity (5).
    17. <17>SHE14383 - Unpublished Report: Field, D and G Brown. 2000. Midsummer Hill Camp. A survey of the earthworks on Midsummer and Hollybush Hill. English Heritage Investigation Report. English Heritage.
    18. <18>SHE15752 - Serial: Shoesmith, Ron (ed). 1967. Herefordshire Archaeological News No 5. Woolhope Club Archaeological Research Section. 5. Pages 4.
    19. <19>SHE16296 - Bibliographic reference: Stanford, S.C.. 1966. Archaeology, 1966. Transactions of the Woolhope Naturalists' Field Club. XXXVIII 1966 Part III. 257-258. XXXVIII 1966 Part III. Pages 257.

    Associated events

    Protected status

    1. Scheduled Monument 4: Midsummer Hill Camp

    Associated Historic Landscape Character Records

    1. HHE370 - Unenclosed - Upland Waste
    Last Updated: 23/07/2010 12:35:57