Page last updated at 07:47 GMT, Monday, 13 October 2008 08:47 UK

Homes surveyed for heritage book

Homes in the Somerset village of Westbury-sub-Mendip are coming under the scrutiny of English Heritage investigators this week.

The information will form part of a new book on the landscape and settlements of the Mendips area.

A total of 29 parishes in 198 sq km of the Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) will be examined.

Barry Jones, of English Heritage, said they were looking at aspects of the area previously un-researched.

"We get a chance to look at the monuments in the landscape," he said.

"We get to look at the buildings, we're learning from the actual remains on the ground, so rather than concentrate on the work already done, we're trying to get the real story out of the real buildings. We're finding new things all the time.

"For example, my colleagues have been doing some work up at Charterhouse, the Roman settlement, which is an important architectural site known about for years.

"But for the first time - because of the detailed work they've done - we've got an idea of the layout of the streets, what size the plots were for the individual buildings and parcels of land, so we're getting a lot more richness of information and we're filling in gaps, areas that people haven't researched before."

The book is expected to published in 18 months to two years' time.

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