Romano-British settlement, 580m north west of Biddleston Home Farm
- Heritage Category:
- Scheduled Monument
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
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This copy shows the entry on 01-Mar-2021 at 21:57:00.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- Northumberland (Unitary Authority)
- National Park:
- National Grid Reference:
- NT 94877 08746
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 many areas they were of stone
construction, although in the coastal lowlands timber-built variants were also
common. 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. Frequently the
enclosures reveal a regularity and similarity of internal layout. The standard
layout included one or more stone round-houses situated towards the rear of
the enclosure, facing the single entranceway. In front of the houses were
pathways and small enclosed yards. Homesteads normally had only one or two
houses, but larger enclosures could contain as many as six. At some sites the
settlement appears to have grown, often with houses spilling out of the main
enclosure and clustered around it. At these sites up to 30 houses may be
found. In the Cumbrian uplands the settlements were of less regimented form
and unenclosed clusters of houses of broadly contemporary date are also known.
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. In lowland coastal areas they were also originally common,
although there they can frequently only be located through aerial photography.
All homestead sites which survive substantially intact will normally be
identified as nationally important.
The settlement north west of Biddlestone Home Farm is well preserved and retains significant archaeological deposits. It is one of a group of later prehistoric and Romano-British settlements in the area and will contribute to any study of the settlement pattern at this time.
The monument includes the remains of a stone-built settlement of
Romano-British date, situated on a shoulder of land overlooking the steep
south east slopes of Loundon Hill, above the Biddlestone Burn. The settlement
comprises two sub-circular embanked enclosures situated 5m apart and the
remains of two circular stone founded houses. The most westerly enclosure
measures 21m east-west by 18m north-south and is bounded by a wall of earth
and stone up to 4m wide which stands to a maximum height of 1.0m. The
foundations of two external circular houses abutt the enclosure on the
northern side: the houses measure 7m and 5m in diameter and their surrounding
walls stand to a height of 1m. The most easterly enclosure measures 25m
north-south by 21m east-west and is surrounded by stone and earth walls
standing to a maximum height of 0.5m. The two enclosures are linked at their
northern ends by a low earthen bank.
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
Jobey, G, 'Archaeologia Aeliana, 4 ser 42' in Enclosed Stone Built Settlements in Northumberland, (1964), 63
NT 90 NW 30,
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