Hembury Fort, Payhembury, Honiton, Devon
High up above the Otter Valley not far from Honiton in East Devon, Hembury Fort stands silent and noble as it has done for centuries. It was subject to excavation in the 1930s and 1980s and has been designated a Scheduled Monument; there is evidence of settlements here from the Neolithic period, which is pretty amazing in itself. It was certainly used as an Iron Age fort and as a military base when the Romans were here - not really surprising because with steep natural slopes on three sides, it’s an incredible vantage point, and from atop the views stretch on and on for miles across the landscape.
The site is managed to preserve the archaeology and biodiversity, so whilst it’s a beautiful place to explore or to walk the dog, it’s important that all aspects of the fort should be respected at all times. You’ll find tracks and trails, knarly moss covered trees, and in late spring, huge patches of bluebells; what you’ll notice most is the tranquillity, the birdsong and that sense of times past.
You can see several of the artefacts unearthed from the 20th century digs in the Royal Albert Memorial Museum in Exeter.
All information correct at the time of writing