(OS 1:10000 a SP 45 NE, b SP 45 SE)
The oval parish, which covers 1265 hectares, lies
with its W. boundary adjoining parts of Oxfordshire
and Warwickshire. It is mainly on flat or gently undulating Lower Lias Clay between 100 m. and
150 m. above OD, but in the centre around Upper
Boddington and in the N.W. the land rises steeply
to a maximum of 180 m. above OD, based on an
outcrop of Middle Lias clays and silts. There are two
separate villages in the parish, Upper and Lower
Boddington, each of which had, in medieval times,
its own land and field system (Fig. 33).
Fig. 33 Boddington
Medieval settlements and estates
Prehistoric and Roman
Part of a Neolithic polished stone adze was found in
Upper Boddington in 1978 (SP 48125371; NM; Northants.
Archaeol., 14 (1979), 102).
b(1) Roman Settlement (?) (SP 481534), within the village of Upper Boddington, on clays and silts at 145 m.
above OD. A quantity of Roman pottery has been found
in this area over a number of years (NM; OS Record
b(2) Roman Coin Hoard (SP 480540). N. of Upper
Boddington. In 1873 a brown-glazed red pot was discovered in this area. It contained 360 Roman coins dating
mainly from the second half of the 3rd century, all 'third
brass'. (NM; Northants. N. and Q., 1st Ser., 3 (1890), 151;
OS Record Cards)
Medieval and Later
b(3) Settlement Remains (centred SP 482535; Fig. 34),
formerly part of Upper Boddington, lie within and around
the existing village, on clays and silts between 125 m. and
152 m. above OD. The plan of Upper Boddington consists
of two separate elements lying to the W. of an undoubtedly
ancient trackway known as the Welsh Road. The S. part
is a simple N.-S. street with the church and manor house
at its southern, higher end. To the N. is a more complex
arrangement of streets and lanes arranged in an irregular
grid. A possible interpretation of this plan is that the N.
S. street was the earlier and that the N. part grew up, or
was deliberately added, at a later date. The surviving earthworks go some way to supporting this idea.
Fig. 34 Boddington (3) Settlement remains at Upper Boddington, (4) Dam
The main earthworks lie in the N.E. of the village, S.
of Townsend Lane ('a' on plan). They consist of a broad
irregular hollow-way extending E.-W. parallel to Townsend Lane and forming a link between London End and
the hollowed footpath N. of Frog Lane. On either side of
this hollow-way are earthworks, very disturbed, but with
some indications that there was formerly a series of closes
bounded by low scarps. A number of large depressions
may represent former buildings. A little late-medieval pottery has been found in the side of the hollow-way.
A further set of abandoned closes, probably the sites of
former houses, lay along the N. side of Townsend Lane
(SP 481537). These have been destroyed by recent housing
development, except for a short section of another E.-W.
hollow-way, perhaps the N. boundary of the village at one
time, and the ends of three closes. Fragments of an early
medieval pot were found in this area in 1975 (SP 48155370;
NM; Northants. Archaeol., 13 (1978), 186).
At the S. end of the village there are some indeterminate
banks and scarps S. of Manor Farm; on the steep hillside
to the W. of the farm, two wide, rounded depressions
extend down the hillside, perhaps old tracks to the fields
below. There is probably another hollow-way further N.
All the earthworks were already abandoned by the mid
19th century (NRO, map of Upper Boddington, said to
be of 1868, but probably before 1831). (RAF VAP CPE/UK/
1926, 5071; 106C/UK/1698, 5283–4)
b(4) Dam (SP 478537; Fig. 34), lies in the N.W. corner
of the village, N. of Townsend Lane, spanning the valley
of a small S.-flowing brook, on Lower Lias Clay at 132 m.
above OD. On a mid 19th-century map (NRO) a large
pond covering almost 2.5 hectares is shown though there
is no indication of its purpose. The dam is 15 m. wide and
up to 2.5 m. high, with a break in the centre through
which the stream now passes. Below the dam, to the W.
of the stream, are the foundations of a stone building which
certainly existed until 1947 and which are perhaps the
remains of a mill. An irregular watercourse further W. and
N.W. between the assumed mill and the adjacent ridge-and-furrow appears to be an overflow channel around the
W. end of the dam. (RAF VAP 106G/UK/1698, 5284–5)
b(5) Settlement Remains (centred SP 482523; Fig. 35),
formerly part of Lower Boddington, lie in and around the
existing village, on Lower Lias Clay between 120 m. and
140 m. above OD. The present village lies along two
streets, Banbury Road and Hill Road, which meet at a
crossroads in the N.W. corner; another street. Owl End
Lane, runs parallel to Hill Road. The remains of an L-shaped hollow-way some 3 m. deep show that Owl End
Lane, now a cul-de-sac, once extended N.E. to meet Hill
Road ('a' on plan). Other earthworks elsewhere appear to
be sites of former houses and gardens. (RAF VAP CPE/UK/
b(6) Enclosures (SP 482518; Fig. 35), lie immediately S.
of Lower Boddington village, around Paradise Farm, on
Lower Lias Clay at 115 m. above OD. All the fields around
the farm contain small enclosures bounded by low scarps
or shallow ditches. A hollow-way passes through them to
the S.E. of the farm and the fragmentary remains of another run S.W. The date and purpose of the enclosures is
unknown but they may be abandoned paddocks of the
farm. (RAF VAP CPE/UK/1926, 5070–1)
(7) Cultivation Remains (Fig. 33). Upper and Lower
Boddington appear each to have had separate common
fields, but both were enclosed under the same Act of Parliament of 1758. Ridge-and-furrow of these fields exists on
the ground or can be traced on air photographs over almost
the whole parish except in a small area N. of Upper Boddington known as Little Common (NRO, 19th-century
map of Boddington). However, on the higher land in the
extreme N.W. of the parish known as Short Down Leys
ridge-and-furrow is still visible. On the lower, flatter
ground in the S. and S.W. the ridge-and-furrow is
arranged mainly in large rectangular interlocked furlongs,
but on the higher land in the N. and N.W., and especially
on the steep slopes there, end-on furlongs are more
Several minor details of the common fields are of interest. To the S.W. of Lower Boddington (SP 480511) two
large end-on furlongs of reversed-S form have been
ploughed as one, with the result that the ridges twist as
they rise over the older underlying headlands. This also
occurs in other places for example W. of Lower Boddington (SP 469522) and W. of Upper Boddington (SP 475532).
The most notable of the access-ways or roads through the
ridge-and-furrow is a long lane extending from the parish
boundary with Aston le Walls (SP 488512) to the S.E.
corner of Lower Boddington (SP 484518). This appears to
be an alternative route of the ancient drove road, known
as the Welsh Road, and once continued S.E. to Aston le
Walls village until blocked by the later fishponds (Aston
le Walls (3)). (RAF VAP CPE/UK/1926, 5067–74; CPE/UK/1994,
4105–7, 4152–4; 106G/UK/1698, 5281–6)