Last Update: 22nd August 2019

This page contains reference material and useful links.



Shotover: The life of an Oxfordshire Hill.

Two of our group, Ivan Wright and Jacqueline Wright, are the editors of this book and have written some of the text.

"Shotover Wildlife's attractive new book explores the rich wildlife of Shotover Hill, covering all of the main species groups including flowers, trees, birds, butterflies, bees, beetles and mammals. Written by specialists in non-technical language, the book also places the past 20 years of species surveying and research by Shotover Wildlife in the context of work by the naturalists of past centuries."

"The reader will gain an appreciation of the intricate mosaic of habitats across the Hill, including heath, grasslands and ancient woodland, as well as an overview of the physical geography and important fossils. The book concludes with an exploration of the future for wildlife at Shotover."

The Shotover Book



The following site explains how cropmarks form and what they represent.

"Buried archaeological features can affect the rate of growth of crops planted into the soil above them. Ditches, pits and other features dug into the subsoil have, over the centuries, become filled by a variety of means. They provide a greater depth of soil than can be found in their immediate surroundings, something that can lead to enhanced growth of the crop immediately above them. Alternatively, a reduction in soil depth caused by the presence of, for example, buried wall foundations or compacted surfaces such as floors or Roman roads can inhibit growth. From above, the patterns created can be observed from visible differences in crop colour and height during various stages of the growing season."

Formation of cropmarks



Ring ditches, barrows and associated enclosures, Port Meadow.

"Port Meadow and Wolvercote Common contain evidence for consecutive periods of human activity covering the Bronze Age and Iron Age. Well preserved sites of this type are rare in Britain especially where evidence for habitation, burial and farming are found in association and occasionally overlap."

Port Meadow Enclosures



The British History Online site has a very good description and history of the parish of Horspath.

"The parish of Horspath stretches from the slopes of Shotover in the north across the valley of the Northfield Brook, a feeder of the Thames, to the slopes of Cuddesdon and Garsington in the south. Its northern and eastern boundaries are thus mostly above the 400-ft. contour line, but along the stream which separates the parish from Cowley on the west the land is as low as 257 ft. above sea-level. The junction of its boundaries with Headington and Cowley is marked by Bullingdon Green, which was once common to Cowley and Horspath"

Horspath Parish