Field system

Aerial view of fields at Aston ClintonA term used to describe the layout and form of agricultural fields. The way in which people have farmed has altered significantly over time causing changes in the size, shape, location and layout of fields. Evidence of past field systems may be fossilised within current land boundaries or may remain as earthworks or cropmarks.


There are several distinct types of field system. One early type that has been identified in some areas are co-axial field systems which tend to date to the late prehistoric period. Medieval field systems are called open field and contain ridge-and-furrow where it is surviving. Later field systems were created by Act of Parliament and are known as parliamentary enclosure.