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Great Missenden; The Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Rook Wood

In the civil parish of Great Missenden.
In the historic county of Buckinghamshire.
Modern Authority of Buckinghamshire.
1974 county of Buckinghamshire.
Medieval County of Buckinghamshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SP90870043
Latitude 51.69533° Longitude -0.68624°

Great Missenden; The Castle has been described as a probable Timber Castle.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


A nearly square enclosure of simple plan and doubtful origin, possibly a medieval manorial stronghold but owing to the levels, the ditches can never have held water. The defences at the strongest part consist of a rampart 11ft high and a ditch 7ft deep. The entrance is on the NE side with a causeway across the ditch. On the SW side is another entrance, probably modern. (RCHME) Pieces of cooking pots dated to C12 by G Dunning were found in and near a pit inside the earthwork, close to the SW entrance. (Cockburn) The Castle (name verified). A well engineered defensive earthwork consisting of a rampart and outer ditch, measuring overall c80.0m square with round corners but not of uniform construction. On the NE side is the original central causewayed entrance with the rampart and ditch on both sides inturned into it. Here the internal bank is c2.0m high and the ditch from the top of the bank to the base of the ditch is c3.0m high. On the NW and SE sides, the defences progressively reduce towards the SW where the internal bank is c0.5m high and from the bottom of ditch to the top of the bank is c1.5m high. Here a modern way cuts the work near a circular pit which mutilates the inner bank. There is no trace of structure in the internal area and no levelling or interruption of the natural SW slope is apparent. The size, good preservation and the only known finds suggest this is a Medieval work. (PastScape)

Isolated from settlement, although there was a water mill 500m SW. The defensive construction, name and C12 pottery are suggestive of ringwork.
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:21:02

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