Monument details

HER Number:341/1
Type of record:Archaeology
Name:Maiden Castle Promontory Fort on Bickerton Hill 700m West of Hill Farm


This is a Promontory Hill fort, a defensive settlement created using a natural spur of land with steep sides with a short line of man made earthworks across the neck to create a defensive enclosure. In this case it is built on a cliff edge on the highest part of the southern end of mid-Cheshire sandstone ridge.

Maiden Castle is situated on the edge of a cliff with its outer edge protected by a double rampart. It is a Scheduled Monument. There is no ditch between the earthworks and archaeological investigation has revealed that the inner rampart is supported by dry stone walling with a core of sand and timber strapping, in bands. The outer rampart was originally a timber palisade which was replaced by an earth bank that was later strengthened with stone walling.

The timber from the ramparts has been dated giving a date of around 600BC for its construction. It is probable that this settlement was occupied from its creation until the Roman Invasion of Britain in the first century AD.

The site survives extremely well despite seventeenth century quarrying activity which has left its mark on the interior of the Hillfort and twentieth century use for military training exercises. There are few finds from this site. One is a piece of Iron age pottery and another is an iron rock splitting wedge, associated with seventeenth century quarrying activity.


Monument Types

  • BANK (EARTHWORK) (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • BUILDING? (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • DYKE (DEFENCE) (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • ENTRANCE (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • HARD STANDING (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • HILLFORT (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • PALISADE (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • POST HOLE (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • PROMONTORY FORT (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
  • STRUCTURE? (Iron Age - 800 BC to 42 AD)
Protected Status:Scheduled Monument 1013293: Maiden Castle Promontory Fort On Bickerton Hill 700M West Of Hill Farm

Cheshire East Council and Cheshire West & Chester Council - Working in Partnership
Heritage Lottery Fund