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Cricklade – the 25th burh to be cited in the Burghal Hidage

Kingdom Type of Burh No. of Hides O.S. Grid Ref
Wessex Burghal Town 1500 SU10079359
“The borough of Cricklade is a rectangular area of some 80 acres. The ramparts are much spread; where best preserved they show as a broad bank between 50 and 60 ft wide and about 3 ft high. In places this bank has entirely disappeared; more generally it is marked by modern hedges or shows as a slight rise in the ground. Extensive excavations by W T Wainright and C A R Radford between 1948 and 1964 and by J Haslam in 1975, have shown that there were three distinctive phases of construction and reconstruction. First a clay bank, presumably late 9th century, was built, revetted with turves. Two ditches were cut, the inner one separated from the bank by a berm 7.0m wide, with the outer one 4.0m beyond it. They were 2.0m wide and 1.5m deep. Apparently these ditches did not round the corners of the ramparts, within each one of which stood a tower. Secondly a stone wall, more than 1.0m thick at the base was built against the front of the bank, probably in the early 11th century. Soon after this, however, the wall was deliberately pulled down and its stones used to fill up the ditches, an act which may be related to the historic slighting of the defences by Cnut in 1016. The third phase was the construction of a timber palisade around the 9th century bank, the recutting of the inner south ditch and its extension to a point 70.0m beyond the line of the west rampart. This reconstruction may be related to refortification by William of Dover in 1144 against King Stephen. ”

Text from Historic England Research Records: Crecgelade

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