The Offa's Dyke chapter contrasts the Cyril Fox and Keith Ray schools of thought, and comes up with some conclusions of its own. Although in broad agreement with much of what Keith Ray is saying about the construction and form of the Dyke on the Shropshire stretches, there are some areas where more work needs to be done. For example:
- The attribution to Offa is still not certain: we only know that the Dyke is post-Roman (Fox) and pre-Norman (Everson) but more dating is required;
- The question of entrances and controlled access still needs further work: I examine this in the context of the unusual form of the earthwork at Hergan;
- There needs to be more consideration of the relationship between the Dyke and fortified (or at least defensible) enclosures and positions behind (ie. to the east) of it.
- Andy Wigley on the origins and social context of Iron Age hillforts
- Roger White on the impact and legacy of Roman occupation
- Rachael Abbiss on the Georgian military landscape
- Tim Jenkins on the logistical legacy of the first and second world wars
- Ruth Brown and Kay Smith on surviving collections of arms and armour
- James Pardoe on the interpretation of military heritage
It was a very enjoyable meeting and the resulting publication is a useful and timely contribution. It would be nice to see some more thematic studies of Shropshire and the surrounding areas which are similarly well-balanced between academic and popular audiences.