A NEW book has been published compiling a 'definitive record' of one of Shropshire's most treasured monuments.

Tim Malim and George Nash have published 'Old Oswestry Hillfort and its Landscape: Ancient Past, Uncertain Future', highlighting the story of the Old Oswestry Hillfort and its six thousand years of history.

The hillfort and its landscape have been the centrepiece for many historical events and uses, including its past as a market centre, the frontier between England and Wales, and as practice trenches during the First World War.

The book is organised into 14 chapters and charts the archaeology, folklore, heritage and landscape development of the monument.

Dr Nash says the book highlights not only the hillfort's history, but also the threats it faces in the future from development.

"Clearly, the hillfort and its immediate landscape has very close links with Oswestry and its people," said Dr Nash. "Not just as just as another archaeological site but as a lived and shared experience, as witnessed by the events that have been previously organised by protest groups opposed to development within the setting of the hillfort.

"Sadly, such development has been encouraged by the Local Planning Authority without objection from the national heritage agency Historic England, against the wishes of the community and against scientific advice from leading archaeologists.

Tim Malim remarked that "This development threat would result in more potential damage to the environment of the hillfort than at any other time in its dramatic and illustrious past."

The authors hope the book will help further the academic research at the site.

"The book is indeed a handsome addition to the archaeology of Shropshire and should go some way of informing and furthering academic research on this remarkable site," he added.

"The book is also a statement on the current critical situation this and other sites face within the currently planning system."