Caesar's Camp Farnham Outer Defences

Published reports


Outer Defences Found to Iron Age Hill Forts

Sourth - West Survey

Sourth - East Survey

North - East Survey

Composite Map


Outer Defences Found to Iron Age Hill Forts

FAB e-News 18 Report Spring 2018

Csar's Camp near Farnham has been surveyed, with a report in this issue. This follows the surveying of the Winchester - Chichester Roman Road under Old Winchester Hill which found that the Hill Fort there had a series of Outer Defences enclosing some 30 times the area of the traditional ramparts. These generally form Fighting Terraces cut on sloping ground, with an assumed palisade on the down-hill side. This would serve to keep intruders out, but also to keep their live stock in. The important question is: are these general features of Iron Age Hill Forts? Thus we are looking at this Hill Fort at Farnham, starting with a survey of the traditional ramparts.

News of this work reached Social Media, producing a number of local people who wished to learn more about it. We ran three tours over Autumn 2017. Some have joined in our study of its Outer Defences.

There are a substantial number of terraces cut in the escarpment above the A325 on the E side of Csar's Camp, which goes into built-up Aldershot in the region of Alexandra Road. Here a rectangle of steep escarpments follows this Road. They can briefly be found on the SE side of Csar's Camp above Heath End - but illustrates the problems we face with a great deal of quarrying and army practise earthworks. Then housing developments come right up to the summit of the downs, and the trail is lost for the S side of Csar's Camp. The westerly escarpment, broadly along the Reading Road, B3013, will be the next place to look.

FAB e-News 19 Report Winter 2019

Old Winchester Hill Fort near Exton was found from the Roman Road mapping to have outer defences enclosing an area about 30 times that enclosed by the traditional ramparts. The study of the iron age hill fort near Farnham is designed to see if these were regular features of the Iron Age. It seems likely that the Farnham fort has them too. But e-New 18 related problems of quarrying and army practice earthworks with modern housing, and these have continued on the W and N sides of Caesar's Camp, with only fragments of the Fighting Terraces we are looking for. A run of these was found in army land E of Ewshot and to N of Beacon Hill, but these went cold.

A break through occurred early 2019 when a narrow valley in Chandlers Coppice with double terraces in places on its E side was found which runs across Bourley Road where it appears as a perfect double terrace running north. This could be seen due to construction of a new fence. This follows the land and comes back to Bourley Road. It is thought this is repeated in a number of places along Bourley Road - bring us back to where we last saw it by the A325.

FAB e-News 20 Report Autumn 2019

Progress in tracing the Outer Defences along Bourley Road (N of the Camp). Terraces along E side of Six Acre Copse, across the S part of this valley by banks forming escarpments, and along E side of this valley by a deep ditch containing a stream with a fighting terrace on its E side. It crosses N of Bourley Road again into Army land only open on certain days - but closed for most of 2019. Banks forming escarpments have been detected through "Camping Ground" following the contours back to Bourley Road and running beside it to the N - S parish boundary (which goes through the Camp). We are well on the way back to the A325 where we last detected it.

Field Programme Reports

June 2018


Walk in June found many gravel workings obscuring what would be a very good defendable escarpment. 25 yds of fighting terrace was found right at the summit of the escarpment - which will be moving to the E side of the B3013.

July 2018

In July we found over 500' of terracing to east of B3013 up Beacon Hill, bending west to cross the hollow way of B3013. 0n the West side is a very steep easily defended natural escarpment. The route to join the above 25yds of terracing can be predicted. Where it goes north of Beacon Hill was located.

Picture where the Outer Defences cross the B3013 Reading Road east of Ewshot. The line is along the high ground of fir trees in the sunlight above the houses. The B road is running in a large hollow way. The Outer Defences would have run across the hollow way, and bend north behind the camera running down Beacon Hill.

August 2018

In August we found 500' of further terracing along the track NE of Beacon Hill, then trail went cold. Further terracing was found round SW of Reservior No. 1. In September we will climb Parkhurst Hill.

September 2018

In September we found terraces up Parkhurst Hill before being lost in brakern. Where the trail went cold in August it was realised that the terrace may be running on the track - so the line could continue - but it is beginning to go too far north to get back to the Royal Pavilion (where the Outer Defences were last detected). The need is to see if a plausible route exists between Reservoirs 1 & 2, which we will attempt in October.

December 2018

In November found that any route around the Reservoirs will lead onto the high tableland on which Caesar's Camp stands, and will not link to those terraces along the A325. Bourley Road may have a lot of terracing and be the route back. We will walk NE from Beacon Hill to understand the lie of the land.

February 2019

A connection has been found with the route we have traced to Parkhurst Hill, to Bourley Road. A narrow valley runs northwards by Six Acre Copse, with double terraces either side of Bourley Road into Chesstnut Copse, and out of it at SU827 513

Traced as terraces along E side of Six Acre Copse, and then along the E side of this valley by a deep wide ditch containing a stream with a fighting terrace on its E side. It then crosses Bourley Road again into Army land only open on certain days. Banks and escarpments have been traced through "Camping Ground", following contours back to Bourley Road, and running beside it till the N - S parish boundary (which goes through Caesar's Camp). We are well on our way back to A325 where we last detected it - but this Army land has not been open again so far in 2019.

November 2019

Escarpment banks found across valley head E of six acre Copse (February). Army land not open.

January 2020

The army land has been open over Xmas and we have managed to trace the Caesar's Camp outer defences through most of it. It crosses Bourley Road again with terraces above it towards the Royal Pavilion.

March 2020

The Caesar's Camp outer defences run on a large causeway across a valley head by the Royal Pavilion, and go inside it, becoming one of its roads.

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