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Topographical Survey


CPAT has extensive experience in undertaking detailed topographical surveys of archaeological sites and wider landscapes. Over the last 15 years our staff have undertaken a wider range of surveys, including prehistoric stone circles, Iron Age hillforts, Roman forts, deserted medieval settlements and 19th-century mining landscapes.

Surveys are undertaken using a digital laser theodolite in conjunction with the latest survey software. The resulting data can be used to produce traditional contour information, as well as digital terrain models.

right: False colour digital terrain model of Penycloddiau Hillfort. © CPAT

Interpretation of earthwork remains is a key element of all topographical surveys, and this can often be aided by evidence from desk-based research, such as early maps and aerial photographs. In other instances the results may be combined with those from geophysical survey to provide a more detailed analysis of a particular site.


Recent surveys have included Penycloddiau Hillfort in the Clwydian Range, which identified numerous eathwork platforms for round huts, and Shrawardine Castle, near Shrewsbury, where a combination of topographical and geophysical surveys revealed several phases of development.

left: Greyscale digital terrain model of Penycloddiau Hillfort. © CPAT

For further information and competitive quotations on any of our services contact:

Bob Silvester, Deputy Director and Head of Field Services
Direct line 01938 552035

Nigel Jones, Senior Project Archaeologist
Direct line 01938 552002

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