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Dooket Hill Survey

Date 19 April 1999 - 22 April 1999

Event ID 967862

Category Recording

Type Field Visit


Survey of Dooket Hill permitted close scrutiny of the form of the earthwork. While limited vegetation removal permitted access in some areas (notably in the area of the entrance) a number of zones on the lower slopes remained inaccessible. The survey was extended to the NTS property boundary, the remains of a dry stone retaining wall encircling the base of the artificial mound. Areas of erosion and modern landscape features were also plotted.

Vegetation clearence revealed a well-defined entrance to the motte to the E. This pierced the low bank or rampart that had been raised around the outer lip of the summit of the mound. The latter was generally well defined.

On the very gently sloping ground within the rampart two principal features are evident, a building platform and a substantial circular depression. The former occupies part of the SE sector of the summit close against the inner face of the rampart. It covers an approximate area of 5m by 7.5m whose principal axis lies at some 45° – 50° E of N. Barely discernable slight low ridges appear to delineate wall footings to the SW, NW and NE. The depression occupies much of the NE sector of the summit and measures some 5m N/S by 6m E/W with a present maximum depth of 0.80m below the surrounding surface of the summit.

Further features of the summit include two reasonably well defined narrow ‘cuts’ through the crest of the rampart to the NE of the doocot. With an approximately level platform to the interior behind each these were interpreted as possible gun emplacements (although the cuts may perhaps also be explained by the falling of substantial trees). The rampart also displays a series of further dips or irregularities, less well defined than those just described, to the SW and W of the doocot. A further

substantial dip to the NW was thought not to be archaeological.

The dry stone retaining wall encircling the foot of the motte, though much collapsed was dircernable for much of its length. It had been grubbed away to the E, and the base of the motte slightly cut into during the construction of the drive for an adjacent bungalow.

Other modern impacts to the mound include more or less serious areas of erosion to the NNW, NNE and SE, a series of small hollows to the E and ENE that may relate to fallen trees and a hollow to the W infilled with pieces of stone and now mostly grassed over.

To the ESE a path had been constructed between two stone retaining walls and has two flights of stone steps. The path continues to the summit of the motte having been cut through part of the rampart on the way.

The only other features on the summit are 4 modern floodlights and a stone and cement plinth and display panel upon the rampart to the SW.

Information from NTS (SCS) December 2013

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