Reaveley Hill settlement


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


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

Northumberland (Unitary Authority)
National Park:
National Grid Reference:
NT 99871 17247


Two enclosed settlements and shieling, 637m north west of Ewe Hill.

Reasons for Designation

In Cumbria and Northumberland several distinctive types of native settlements dating to the Roman period have been identified. The majority were small, non- defensive, enclosed homesteads or farms. In much of Northumberland, especially in the Cheviots, the enclosures were curvilinear in form. Further south a rectangular form was more common. Elsewhere, especially near the Scottish border, another type occurs where the settlement enclosure was `scooped' into the hillslope. The standard layout included one or more stone round-houses situated towards the rear of the enclosure, facing the single entranceway. Homesteads normally had only one or two houses, but larger enclosures could contain as many as six. These homesteads were being constructed and used by non-Roman natives throughout the period of the Roman occupation. Their origins lie in settlement forms developed before the arrival of the Romans. These homesteads are common throughout the uplands where they frequently survive as well-preserved earthworks. All homestead sites which survive substantially intact will normally be identified as nationally important.

The enclosed settlements north west of Ewe Hill are well-preserved and good examples of their type. The presence of a medieval shieling in such close proximity to the earlier homesteads provides insight into continuity and change in the character of settlement between the medieval and Romano-British periods. The monument is an integral part of a rich archaeological landscape with abundant evidence of Iron Age and Romano-British settlement. The presence of upstanding structural remains indicates that the monument will contain archaeological deposits relating to its construction, use and abandonment.


See Details.


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 31 May 2016. This record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes the remains of two enclosed settlements of Romano-British date, a group of unenclosed hut circles and a medieval shieling situated on a south east facing slope between Knock Hill and Reaveley Hill overlooking the Breamish valley to the south. The first and most north easterly enclosure (NT9989 1728) is ‘scooped’ slightly into the hill side and is sub-triangular in shape. It is enclosed by a single bank of stone and earth measuring up to 2.6 in width and 1m in height with an entrance on the east down slope side. Within the interior of the enclosure there are at least six hut circles with diameters varying from 3.4m to 5.8m and walls approximately 2.7m thick and 0.5m high. The interior of the enclosure is divided into a number of compartments by a low stone and earth bank. Lying to the south west of this enclosure there is a second irregularly-shaped enclosure (NT9985 1726) within a bank formed from large stone blocks standing to a height of up to 1m. This enclosure is partly overlaid by a post-medieval sheep stell. On the east side of the main enclosure is an annexe surrounded by a stone bank 2m wide and 0.4m high. The interior of the enclosure is divided into compartments by low stone and earth banks and contains at least five hut circles. The hut circles vary in diameter from 3.9m to 5.4m. Located south west of the central enclosure is a group of at least five unenclosed hut circles (NT9984 1723), which vary in diameter from 3.8m to 5m. To the south of the central enclosure is a double enclosure consisting of two enclosure set together to form an L-shape. The upper enclosure is 7.6m long and the lower enclosure is 13.4m long and both are surrounded by low walls 0.6m high. The structures are interpreted as the remains of a medieval shieling.


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

Legacy System number:
ND 467
Legacy System:


PastScape Monument No:- 2043 (enclosure), 1034383 (enclosure), 1034385 (shieling), 1034384 (hut circles)


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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