Visited Rybury hillfort today, walking through the mid-day mist from the village of Allington. Taking the hard surface track uphill towards the Wansdyke, it was easy walking; initially seemed to be a gentle incline but became progressively steeper, reaching 294 metres at it highest point. Earthworks visible to our left (near some sheep holding pens) as we reached the top of the hill . Amazing views of the rolling downs overlooking the Pewsey Vale; almost treeless apart from a few low lying thorn bushes, there was something beautifully bleak about the mist rolling across them.
Clifford's Hill was to our left as we walked across the high flat hill top. A walk downhill, then a surprisingly easy scramble up Clifford's Hill to the hill fort surrounding the summit. As with all of Wiltshire's hillfort's, fantastic views, in this case, towards Milk Hill. And a sense of the solitary. A windy walk along a ridge back down to the Pewsey-Marlborough road crossing over to Cannings Cross Farm where the footpath is clearly marked towards the Kennet and Avon Canal.
Rybury began as Neolithic causewayed camp, like nearby Knap Hill, and is thought to date from about 2500BC. The hilltop is encircled by ditches crossed by causeways. It seems an excellent site to choose: a naturally isolated flattish spot, surrounded by steep slopes on a spur of the downs, with wide views of the vale below.
Later an Iron Age enclosure was built here - this is the period the bank comes from. Dyer (in 'Southern England, an Archaeological Guide') suggests that the site's eastern side shows the Neolithic ditches the best (the outer ditch being Neolithic, the inner being Iron Age?).