Romano-British farmstead, 1.3km north east of Harwood Head

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1008837

Date first listed: 25-Aug-1994

Map

Ordnance survey map of Romano-British farmstead, 1.3km north east of Harwood Head
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

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

District: Northumberland (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Hollinghill

National Grid Reference: NY 98450 90941

Summary

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

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.

Despite some damage from afforestation the farmstead north east of Harwood Head is well preserved and retains significant archaeological deposits. It is one of a group of broadly contemporary settlements in the area and will contribute to any study of the settlement pattern at this time.

History

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

Details

The monument includes the remains of a farmstead of Romano-British date situated on a gentle south eastern slope. The farmstead, sub-rectangular in shape, measures 50m east-west by a maximum of 60m north-south within two banks separated by a ditch. The inner bank is 4m wide and 0.5m high; the outer bank is of similar proportions. The broad ditch is on average 6m wide and 1m deep below the top of the banks on either side. An entrance 6m wide is, unusually for this type of settlement, placed in the western wall rather than the eastern wall of the enclosure, and is carried across the ditch on a causeway.

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.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number: 21038

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Hogg, A H A, 'Proc Soc Antiq Ncle 4 ser 11' in Native Settlements of Northumberland, (1947), 169
Jobey, G, 'Archaeologia Aeliana 4 ser 38' in Rectlinear Settlements of the Roman Period in Northumberland, (1960), 37
Other
NY 99 SE 03,

End of official listing