Halton medieval settlement


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.
Northumberland (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
NY 99817 67800, NY 99877 67723, NY 99879 67857

Reasons for Designation

Medieval rural settlements in England were marked by great regional diversity in form, size and type, and the protection of their archaeological remains needs to take these differences into account. To do this, England has been divided into three broad Provinces on the basis of each area's distinctive mixture of nucleated and dispersed settlements. These can be further divided into sub-Provinces and local regions, possessing characteristics which have gradually evolved during the last 1500 years or more. The Northumbrian Plain local region is an extensive, undulating lowland. Its landscape bears many signs of agrarian improvement and reconstruction in the 18th and 19th centuries, including rectangular fields and post-medieval dispersed farmsteads. The earthworks of deserted and shrunken village settlements and the ridge and furrow of former arable townfields indicate the pattern of medieval, `pre-improvement' agrarian and settlement structures. Medieval villages were organised agricultural communities, sited at the centre of a parish or township, that shared resources such as arable land, meadow and woodland. Village plans varied enormously, but when they survive as earthworks their most distinguishing features include roads and minor tracks, platforms on which stood houses and other buildings such as barns, enclosed crofts and small enclosed paddocks. They frequently included the parish church within the their boundaries, and as part of the manorial system most villages included one or more manorial centres which may also survive as visible remains as well as below ground deposits. In the central province of England, villages were the most distinctive aspect of medieval life, and their archaeological remains are one of the most important sources of understanding about rural life in the five or more centuries following the Norman conquest. The shrunken medieval settlement of Halton is well preserved and retains significant archaeological deposits. The village is a good example which taken together with the adjacent listed tower and church will add greatly to our knowledge and understanding of medieval settlement in the region.


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of a medieval shrunken settlement surrounding a surviving group of buildings forming part of the shrunken settlement of Halton. The remains are visible as a series of earthworks and are divided into three separate areas of protection. The first and more northerly area contains the remains of a number of rectangular enclosures with a series of house platforms at their west end. The second area of protection to the south contains a second group of rectangular enclosures and to the south of this there is another group of enclosures, some of which are defined by level platforms that are considered to represent crofts. The third and most westerly area of protection contains part of the former village green. During the 13th century the manor of Halton was held by the family of Halton and it was during this century that the village reached its high point. Records show that by 1296 the number of tax paying residents had started to contract and the lordship was laid to waste by the Scots in 1385; by 1719 the village had shrunk to only two farms.

SOURCES PastScape Monument No:- 18278 NMR:- NY96NE39 Northumberland HER:- 8672


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
ND 620
Legacy System:


This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

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