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Silbury Hill

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;

In the civil parish of Avebury.
In the historic county of Wiltshire.
Modern Authority of Wiltshire.
1974 county of Wiltshire.
Medieval County of Wiltshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SU10016853
Latitude 51.41572° Longitude -1.85742°

Silbury Hill has been described as a Timber Castle although is doubtful that it was such.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


Late Neolithic flat-topped conical mound which stands to a height of some 37m above an encircling quarry ditch. The summit has seen several later episodes of disturbance, including some form of revetment of late Saxon date (late Saxon or early Norman potsherds were found, as was a coin of circa 1010).

The most recent excavations, on the summit, in the summer of 2007, found a massive post hole - possibly for a watch tower - dated to the C11. Jim Leary, the field archaeologist responsible tentatively associated this work with the Saxon-Danish wars and with the battle of East Kennet of 1006 recorded in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle.
Atkinson's discovery of a late Saxon palisade on the hill summit, confirmed by Leary's new excavations, show that the early C11 Saxon's were capable and willing to build mound based fortifications, at least to supervise the strategically important Roman road (Now the A4). The Norman motte was not a novel form of building for the Saxons although it was probably used by the Normans in an entirely novel way, as a symbol of personal dominion, rather than a feature of community defence. There seems to be no evidence of a fortification on Silbury after the Conquest.
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:09

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