Throstle Brow prehistoric enclosure


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.

Eden (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
NY 56615 37491

Reasons for Designation

Prehistoric enclosures are plots of land usually enclosed by stone walls or banks of stone and earth in upland areas, and banks of earth with an external ditch in lowland areas. Many date to the Bronze Age (c.2000 - 500 BC) although earlier and later examples also exist. They were constructed as stock pens or as protected areas for crop growing and were sometimes subdivided to accommodate animal shelters and hut circle settlements. The size and form of enclosures may therefore vary considerably, depending on their particular function. Their variation in form, longevity and relationship to other monument classes provides important information on the diversity of social organisation and farming practices among prehistoric communities.

Throstle Brow prehistoric enclosure remains clearly visible on aerial photographs, despite the fact that no upstanding earthworks survive. It lies very close to the major complex which includes the stone circle known as Long Meg and Her Daughters. It is thought that this enclosure was in use around the same time as this adjacent complex and attests to the importance of this area as a major gathering point of the wider populace for religious, ritual and ceremonial purposes during many centuries.


The monument is Throstle Brow prehistoric enclosure located on the edge of a wide sandstone terrace above the east bank of the River Eden. It has been identified from cropmarks visible on aerial photographs which clearly show the infilled encircling ditch of the enclosure together with a narrower infilled linear ditch connecting with an entrance on the north eastern side of the enclosure and interpreted as the eastern boundary of a contemporary trackway. There is a modern pond within the enclosure. The enclosure is sub-rectangular and measures approximately 88m east-west by 90m north-south at its widest parts. It is surrounded by a ditch varying between c.2m-4m wide. At the north eastern side of the enclosure there is an entrance c.5m wide. Immediately north of this entrance the trackway ditch arcs to run NNE-SSW along the eastern side of the enclosure for approximately 100m. A post and wire fence and two gateposts are excluded from the scheduling although the ground beneath these features is included.

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.


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Stuckley, W, Itinerarium Curiosum, (1776), 47
Crawford, O G S, 'Antiquity' in Notes and News: Long Meg, , Vol. 8, (), 328-9
AP No. CCC 2522,18, Cumbria County Council, Throstle Brow,


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