Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland

EN3746: Hammer Wood  

(Hammer Wood Camp)

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HER:  West Sussex MWS6486

NMR:  SU 82 SW 1 (246847)

SM:  1015878

NGR:  SU 8460 2403

X:  484626  Y:  124065  (EPSG:27700)

Boundary:  

Summary

Multivallate hillslope fort situated on a SW-sloping greensand spur overlooking the River Rother c. 1.2km to S, with Hammer Stream and Hammer Pond on SE-NW quadrants. Found on aerial photographs by Ordnance Survey 1956. Steep surrounding slopes, less along spur to NE. Roughly rectangular encloses spur and aligned SE-NW with area c. 4ha. Best ramparts on the gentler sloping neck of spur on NE where two parallel banks to 11m wide, flanked by outer ditches. Part excavation (Boyden 1957) showed earthen and rubble rampart construction revetted with locally extracted ironstone slabs. Also hearths associated with early Iron Age pottery. Six charcoal burning platforms visible in and on site. Rest of ramparts smaller scale, with steeply-sided NW and SE edges of spur enclosed mostly by single bank and ditch. To SW spur-edge rampart augmented by parallel, outer bank and ditch constructed c. 15m downslope. Ramparts disturbed in places by subsequent construction and use of more recent tracks and paths. Single entrance in the middle of N side and distinctly offset. On OS 1:25,000 map (1958).

Status

Citizen Science:  ✗  

Reliability of Data:  Confirmed

Reliability of Interpretation:  Confirmed

Location

X:  -88512  Y:  6623008  (EPSG: 3857)

Longitude:  -0.795114  Latitude:  51.00969  (EPSG:4326)

Country:  England

Current County or Unitary Authority:  West Sussex

Historic County:   Sussex

Current Parish/Community/Council/Townland:  Stedham with Iping

Condition

Extant:  
Cropmark:  
Likely Destroyed:  

Land Use

Woodland:  
Commercial Forestry Plantation:  
Parkland:  
Pasture (Grazing):  
Arable:  
Scrub/Bracken:  
Bare Outcrop:  
Heather/Moorland:  
Heath:  
Built-up:  
Coastal Grassland:  
Other:  

Landscape

Hillfort Type

Multivallate hillslope fort situated on a SW-sloping greensand spur overlooking the River Rother c. 1.2km to S, with Hammer Stream and Hammer Pond on SE-NW quadrants. Steep surrounding slopes, less along spur to NE.

Contour Fort:  
Partial Contour Fort:  
Promontory Fort:  
Hillslope Fort:  
Level Terrain Fort:  
Marsh Fort:  
Multiple Enclosure Fort:  

Topographic Position

Hilltop:  
Coastal Promontory:  
Inland Promontory:  
Valley Bottom:  
Knoll/Hillock/Outcrop:  
Ridge:  
Cliff/Plateau-edge/Scarp:  
Hillslope:  
Lowland:  
Spur:  

Dominant Topographic Feature:  Spur

Aspect

North:  
Northeast:  
East:  
Southeast:  
South:  
Southwest:  
West:  
Northwest:  
Level:  

Elevation

Altitude:  68.0m

Boundary

Boundary Type:  

Second HER:  

Second Current County or Unitary Authority:  

Second Historic County:  

Second Current Parish/Community/Council/Townland:  

Dating Evidence

Hearths associated with early Iron Age pottery.

Reliability:  B - Medium

Pre 1200BC:  
1200BC - 800BC:  
800BC - 400BC:  
400BC - AD50:  
AD50 - AD400:  
AD400 - AD 800:  
Post AD800:  
Unknown:  

Pre Hillfort Activity:  ✗  

Post Hillfort Activity:  ✗  

Artefactual:  Early Iron Age pottery.

Investigations

Found on aerial photographs by Ordnance Survey 1956. On OS 1:25,000 map (1958). Excavations J.R. Boyden 1957.

Other (1956):  Found on aerial photographs by Ordnance Survey.
Excavation (1957):  J.R. Boyden.
1st Identified Map Depiction (1958):  

Interior Features

Hearths associated with Iron Age pottery. Six charcoal burning platforms visible in and on site.

Water Source

None:  
Spring:  
Stream:  
Pool:  
Flush:  
Well:  
Other:  

Surface

Six charcoal burning platforms visible in and on site.

No Known Features:  
Round Stone Structures:  
Rectangular Stone Structures:  
Curvilinear Platforms:  
Other Roundhouse Evidence:  
Pits:  
Quarry Hollows:  
Other:  

Excavation

Hearths associated with Iron Age pottery. Six post-medieval charcoal platforms.

No Known Excavation:  
Pits:  
Postholes:  
Roundhouses:  
Rectangular Structures:  
Roads/Tracks:  
Quarry Hollows:  
Other:  
Nothing Found:  

Geophysics

No Known Geophysics:  
Pits:  
Roundhouses:  
Rectangular Structures:  
Roads/Tracks:  
Quarry Hollows:  
Other:  
Nothing Found:  

Finds

Iron Age pottery.

No Known Finds:  
Pottery:  
Metal:  
Metalworking:  
Human Bones:  
Animal Bones:  
Lithics:  
Environmental:  
Other:  

Aerial

APs Not Checked:  
None:  
Roundhouses:  
Rectangular Structures:  
Pits:  
Postholes:  
Roads/Tracks:  
Other:  

Entrances

Single entrance in the middle of N side and distinctly offset.

Total Number of Breaks Through Ramparts:  

Number of Possible Original Entrances:   

Guard Chambers:  

Chevaux de Frise:  ✗  

Entrance 1 (North):  Oblique:  Distinctly offset.

Enclosing Works

Best defences on the gentler sloping neck of spur on NE where two parallel banks to 11m wide, flanked by outer ditches. Part excavation by J.R. Boyden1957 showed earthern and rubble construction revetted with locally extracted ironstone slabs. Rest of defences smaller scale, with steeply-sided NW and SE edges of spur enclosed mostly by single bank and ditch. To SW spur-edge rampart augmented by parallel, outer bank and ditch constructed c. 15m downslope.

Enclosed Area 1:  4.0ha.
Enclosed Area 2:  
Enclosed Area 3:  
Enclosed Area 4:  
Total Enclosed Area:  4.0ha.

Total Footprint Area:  

Multi-period Enclosure System:  ✗  

Ramparts Form a Continuous Circuit:  ✓  

Number of Ramparts:  2

Number of Ramparts NE Quadrant:  2
Number of Ramparts SE Quadrant:  1
Number of Ramparts SW Quadrant:  2
Number of Ramparts NW Quadrant:  1

Current Morphology

Partial Univallate:  
Univallate:  
Partial Bivallate:  
Bivallate:
Partial Multivallate:  
Multivallate:  
Unknown:  

Multi-period Morphology

Partial Univallate:  
Univallate:  
Partial Bivallate:  
Bivallate:  
Partial Multivallate:  
Multivallate:  

Surface Evidence

None:  
Earthen Bank:  
Stone Wall:  
Rubble:  
Wall-walk:  
Evidence of Timber:  
Vitrification:  
Other Burning:  
Palisade:  
Counter Scarp Bank:  
Berm:  
Unfinished:  
Other:  

Excavated Evidence

Part excavation by J.R. Boyden1957 showed earthern and rubble construction revetted with locally extracted ironstone slabs.

None:  
Earthen Bank:  
Stone Wall:  
Murus Duplex:  
Timber-framed:  
Timber-laced:  
Vitrification:  
Other Burning:  
Palisade:  
Counter Scarp Bank:  
Berm:  
Unfinished:  
No Known Excavation:  
Other:  

Gang Working

Gang Working:  ✗ 

Ditches

Ditches:  

Number of Ditches:  2

Annex

Annex:  ✗  

References

Boyden, J. R. 1957. Excavations at Hammer Wood, Iping, 1957, Sussex Archaeol Collect. 96, 149-163.

Terms of Use

The online version of the Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland should be cited as:

Lock, G. and Ralston, I. 2017.  Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland. [ONLINE] Available at: https://hillforts.arch.ox.ac.uk.

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