The assumptions underlying the interpretation of the early medieval settlement of woodland are challenged through a detailed study of the Weald in western Sussex. The patterns of usage of woodland in England were very varied, and each area needs to be looked at individually. Systems of woodland exploitation did not simply develop from extensive to intensive, but may have taken a number of different forms during the early medieval period. In one area of the Weald, near to Horsham, the woodland appears to have been systematically divided up between different estates. This implies that woodland settlement may not always have developed organically, but this type of landscape could have been planned. It is argued that the historical complexity of woodland landscapes has not been recognised because the evidence has been aggregated. Instead, each strand of evidence needs to be evaluated separately.
|Number of pages||19|
|Publication status||Published - Jun 2005|