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Castle Hill, Hindlip

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Smite Hill; Oldbury; Auld-berry; Coldharbour Farm

In the civil parish of Salwarpe.
In the historic county of Worcestershire.
Modern Authority of Worcestershire.
1974 county of Hereford and Worcester.
Medieval County of Worcestershire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SO900592
Latitude 52.22854° Longitude -2.14763°

Castle Hill, Hindlip has been described as a Timber Castle although is doubtful that it was such, and also as a Masonry Castle although is doubtful that it was such.

There are uncertain remains.

Description

field called Castle Hill, which abuts Smite Hill, from its appearance might be supposed to scarp artificially. It is said that a castle or fort once stood on Castle Hill, and was at length destroyed by a battery placed on Newland Common. A cannon shot was about forty years ago ploughed up somewhere on spot. Heming's "Cartulary" notices a place called Oldbury in the Anglo Saxon boundaries of Smite. It adjoins Castle Hill Field, and is commonly called Auld-berry. (Allies)

Documentary sources indicate that a castle may once have stood here, no physical evidence has been found yet except some stones.
Flat topped Hill with gentle slope to the south, pronounced ditch or holloway to west & steep drop to the north, this latter being much steeper than natural slope, to the west (ie Smith Hill) & therefore possibly might be supposed to scarp artificially; some smallish stone frags (c200cm) in small localised scatters on the northern scarp (JPR. 1979. Site visit. SMR file).
Shape digitised from the field pattern on the 1813 Ordnance Survey surveyor's drawing (Crowther, S.. 2009. Georeferenced layer of the 1811-1818 2" Ordnance Survey Surveyors' Drawings). (Worcestershire and Worcester City HER)
Comments

Allies description, and reference to an C11 mention of an 'oldbury', suggests a prehistoric enclosure, probably fairly slight (several other Iron Age or Romano British enclosures are recorded in the area). Within this a house or structure, probably not in anyway defensive, may have existed and may have been demolished in the C17. Allies seems to be suggesting that this may have been the site of a Roman mansio. Certainly it may be that the 'oldbury' was a Romano-British site, with some masonry, and an enclosing, possibly earlier, ditch. Further investigation, probably including excavation, would be need but seems most unlikely as the site of a medieval castle of any type.
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated before 1 February 2016

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