Archaeology of the Course

Unusual feature of Hale Golf course!!

One of the more unusual features of the golf course at Hale is the evidence it reveals for medieval field systems. The fairways on holes 1 and 9 have the corrugated appearance characteristic of ridge and furrow. These raised earthworks are the remnants of medieval fields, created by teams of six or eight oxen or horses drawing a plough behind. As the ground was cut into and turned over by the plough, so the sods of earth banked up against each other creating ridges. The width o the ridge varies across England depending on the type of soil, its moisture and the local topography, so not all are precisely the same.

Medieval famers understood well enough that ridge and furrow encouraged better drainage. Indeed, the system was maintained well into the 18th century in some parts of the country, so not all we see is necessarily medieval, even if it likely to be medieval in origin. One dating feature which is often significant is the medieval ridges are not quite straight; they have a reversed 'S' shape when seen from the air - this is explained by the difficulty of turning a long plough team at the end of the ridge, rather like a heavy vehicle pulling out to the left before turning right.

Once the most common surviving features of the medieval landscape, much ridge and furrow has been destroyed in recent decades.

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24.03.2020 08:37
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In accordance with Government directives and England Golf guidance the course is now closed to all golf activity and will remain so until further notice. All tee blocks and flags have been removed.
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