Record Details

NHER Number:27542
Type of record:Monument
Name:Earthworks of post medieval ridge and furrow and drainage ditches

Summary

Earthworks of post medieval narrow ridge and furrow and drainage ditches are visible on aerial photographs. It is possible that the ridge and furrow dates to the period of the Napoleonic Wars (1793-1815) when grain prices were high and areas of the marshland were taken into arable cultivation. Located in an area of former marshland to the west of Yarmouth Road, they appear to have overlain a low earthwork platform (probably a levelled sand dune but possibly a saltern mound of unknown date).

Images - none

Location

Grid Reference:TG 52012 11549
Map Sheet:TG51SW
Parish:CAISTER ON SEA, GREAT YARMOUTH, NORFOLK

Full description

August 2005. Norfolk NMP.
Earthworks of post medieval narrow ridge and furrow and ditches are visible on aerial photographs (S1-S3). These earthworks were located at TG 5203 1153 in an area of former marshland to the west of Yarmouth Road at Caister on Sea.
The ridge and furrow earthworks extend across two adjacent fields. The most extensive remains are visible in the eastern field where the ridge and furrow occupies a triangular area measuring up to 130m by 130m. The southern earthwork ditch in this area, between TG 5201 1149 and TG 5219 1151 is aligned parallel to the modern drainage ditch along the south side of the field and was extant in 1945 (S1). A northern earthwork ditch between TG 5219 1160 and TG 5200 1157 follows a slightly curved course through the ridge and furrow. The line of this ditch continues as an extant drainage ditch to the west where it forms the northern limit of the western ridge and furrow earthworks. Smaller curving ditches are located in the eastern area creating and are presumably of a different date to the ridge and furrow. An earthwork ditch extends on a southwest to northeast alignment between TG 5208 1157 and TG 5216 1166 and defines the northwest side of the eastern ridge and furrow. This ditch is cut by a modern drainage ditch and also crosses the northern east to west aligned earthwork ditch. The western part of the ridge and furrow comprises poorly defined earthworks that cover a triangular area measuring 130m by 110m. They lie entirely within a modern field defined by extant drainage ditches on all sides. Information from [1] suggests that these are the remains of narrow ridge and furrow. It is possible that they date to the period of the Napoleonic Wars (1793-1815) when grain prices were high and areas of the marshland were taken into arable cultivation (S6).
Underlying the central part of the eastern ridge and furrow there appears to be a low and irregular earthwork platform measuring up to 116m by 106m. This has a lower central area, that could represent a pond, within which other ditch earthworks are visible. Other similar amorphous low earthworks are visible further to the south on aerial photographs dating to 1945 and 1946 (S1-S2). Although it is possible that these are saltern mounds, their appearance suggests that they are more likely to be levelled sand dunes that had migrated from the higher ground of the peninsula to the east. The ridge and furrow earthworks were still extant in 1965 (S3-S4) but both fields were under arable cultivation by 1978 (S5).
J. Albone (NMP), 4 August 2005.

Monument Types

  • DITCH (Unknown date)
  • DRAINAGE DITCH (Unknown date)
  • MOUND (Unknown date)
  • SALTERN? (Unknown date)
  • DRAINAGE DITCH (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • NARROW RIDGE AND FURROW (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

<S1>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1945. RAF 106G/UK/726 5062-5063 26-AUG-1945 (NMR).
<S2>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1946. RAF 106G/UK/1634 5036-5037 09-JUL-1946 (NHER TG 5112C / TG 5212B).
<S3>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1963. RAF 543/2531 (F22) 13-14 14-NOV-1963 (NMR).
<S4>Vertical Aerial Photograph: Meridian Airmaps Limited. 1965. MAL 65080 13-14 19-SEP-1965 (NMR).
<S5>Vertical Aerial Photograph: Ordnance Survey. 1978. OS/78105 014-015 19-JUN-1978.
<S6>Monograph: Williamson, T.. 1997. The Norfolk Broads: A Landscape History.. pp 61-62.

Related records - none

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