Hunsbury Hill is an Iron Age Hill Fort situated in Hunsbury Hill Country Park. It is probable that defences were built at Hunsbury Hill between the 7th and 4th centuries BC. The deep ditch excavated has survived to the present day. A wooden rampart was also constructed and there Is evidence that Hunsbury Hillfort’s inner ramparts were burned down and vitrified.
Ironstone extraction began at the hill fort in the 1880s, Many of the fort’s internal features were destroyed, but the work revealed up to 300 pits which, according to the curator of Northampton Museum in 1887, contained “numerous artefacts that now comprise one of the finest collections of Prehistoric antiquities in England”. The finds included iron weapons and tools, bronze brooches, pottery, glass and around 159 quern stones. All were given to the town’s museum. Hunsbury Hillfort is a designated scheduled Ancient Monument. Parts of the fort’s banks have been badly eroded because of the 19th century quarrying, the effects of burrowing animals and damage from tree roots. It is now managed as part of the Country Park by Northampton Borough Council.
Part of the railway built for the quarrying remains and is maintained by Northamptonshire Ironstone Railway Trust. Running through the Park is part of the Banbury Lane Drovers Road used by the Welsh farmers bringing their sheep to Northampton’s Cattle Market.