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Aldro earthworks: a cross-dyke on Birdsall Wold, 200m west of Brown Moor Farm

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Aldro earthworks: a cross-dyke on Birdsall Wold, 200m west of Brown Moor Farm

List entry Number: 1007485

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: North Yorkshire

District: Ryedale

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Thixendale

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 15-Jan-1931

Date of most recent amendment: 27-Jan-1994

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 20496

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Cross dykes are substantial linear earthworks typically between 0.2km and 1km long and comprising one or more ditches arranged beside and parallel to one or more banks. They generally occur in upland situations, running across ridges and spurs. They are recognised as earthworks or as cropmarks on aerial photographs, or as combinations of both. The evidence of excavation and analogy with associated monuments demonstrates that their construction spans the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although they may have been re-used later. Current information favours the view that they were used as territorial boundary markers, probably demarcating land allotment within communities, although they may also have been used as trackways, cattle droveways or defensive earthworks. Cross dykes are one of the few monument types which illustrate how land was divided up in the prehistoric period. They are of considerable importance for any analysis of settlement and land use in the Bronze Age. Very few have survived to the present day and hence all well- preserved examples are considered to be of national importance.

Although altered over most of its length by agricultural activity, the northern end of the cross-dyke is well preserved. It was part of an extensive system of prehistoric dykes which has been recorded in the vicinity of Birdsall Wold and has further associations with other broadly contemporary monuments of similar type. Parallels are also known from other parts of the Wolds and from the southern edge of the North York Moors. Such associations between monuments offer important scope for the study of the division of land for social, ritual and agricultural purposes in different geographical areas during the prehistoric period.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The monument includes part of a prehistoric cross-dyke which ran from the bottom of Brownmoor Dale northwards across the plateau at the western end of Birdsall Wold. The cross-dyke is one of a number of prehistoric monuments in the vicinity of Aldro Farm. Although infilled and levelled by cultivation over most of its length, the southern part of the dyke, as it rises up the north side of the Dale, is visible as a 6m wide ditch, 0.5m deep and flanked by 0.3m high banks, having an overall width of 20m. The continuing course of the ditch has been traced on aerial photographs and J R Mortimer, who recorded the prehistoric remains in the 19th century, noted that the ditch was visible as a cropmark.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Mortimer, J R , Forty Years Researches in British and Saxon Burial Mounds of East Yorkshire, (1905)
Other
Stoetz, K., RCHME unpublished survey,

National Grid Reference: SE 80707 62149

Map

Map
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© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1007485 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 12-Dec-2017 at 01:50:17.

End of official listing