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Penley Copse, Isnage

In the civil parish of Froyle.
In the historic county of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.
Modern Authority of Hampshire.
1974 county of Hampshire.
Medieval County of Hampshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SU77604586
Latitude 51.20669° Longitude -0.89082°

Penley Copse, Isnage has been described as a Timber Castle although is doubtful that it was such.

There are cropmark/slight earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


In the NW of PENLEY COPSE, on level ground, is a rectangular earthwork consisting of two portions, placed longways, E-W; the western rectangle c.45 yards by 31 yards and the eastern one c.34 yards by 27 yards - the measurements are only approx. The larger and principal enclosure has a bank 2 feet high and a ditch 3 feet deep; 34 feet wide overall and in fair preservation except the SE corner where the bank is gone. The entrance 12 feet wide, is just S. of the W. side with no particular features. The E. enclosure has a bank 1 1/2' high and ditch 1' deep. The soil is clay - ponds could be made anywhere. A 'T' shaped trench c.8' wide on the E. side holds a little water.
The earthwork gives the impression of having been protective rather than defensive and the name of the copse suggest a cattle enclosure. PEN. however may refer to the hill on which it is situated (Williams-Freeman; Rev.O.N.B. 1933, 11; P. Hants F.C., 13 (1935-7), 229).
The major part of PENLEY COPSE has now been cleared of trees and the eastern part of this earthwork is in a ploughed field; the bank and ditch are now unsurveyable. The description of the earthwork given by WILLIAMS - FREEMAN - is correct. Probably as a result of the clearance of the trees, foundations of buildings can be seen in the eastern part of the western enclosre as low turf banks with flints on and about them, and with parched grass following their line. No tile fragments were seen or any finds made and it would appear that the enclosures and buildings are a simple Md, homestead (F1 WW 29-JUN-56). (PastScape)

Seemingly described as a possible ringwork at some point. Isolated, not a manorial centre and seems unlikely as a medieval castle.
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:21:02

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