This site is identified as Ring Dam on the first editions 6 " Ordnance Survey map (Fig 96), but appears as Dam Ring in the Enclosure Award of 1796 (1).The name 'dam' strongly suggests a fishpond complex, and a dam is part of the fishpond arrangements adjoining Folkingham Castle, eight kilometres to the east, where several field names relating to pisciculture survive.
The only documentary reference which is likely, although not proven, to relate to these earthworks is a deed of 1335 citing a covenant between Robert de Kyrketon 'of Roppesle' and Roger Rohaut, knight, the former claiming rights and liberties in Ropsley and Humby and a fishery called 'Mickledam and Littledam'(2). There is no evidence for a manor house or large establishment nearby to suggest that this was part of a moat or formal garden, and the layout would not easily accommodate either of these. The earthworks consist principally of a ditch forming three sides of a rectangular area some 60 by 45 metres (Fig 97). The ditch contains some water and may be fed from springs, although none are indicated on the 6" scale Ordnance Survey maps. From here two narrow channels lead downhill to a stream alongside the present south-east road out of Ropsley, merging into one below a narrow bank which crosses them at right angles. There are shallower features suggestive of terracing on the north part of this slope and less distinct traces of a similar nature to the south. At the extreme south end of the field is a mound eight metres in diameter, possibly a mound for a postmill.
1. LAO, Kesteven Enclosure Award 62.
2. 'Abstracts of Lincolnshire Deeds', Lincolnshire Notes and Queries 8 (1905), 235.