Yarnbury henge monument


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1008877

Date first listed: 19-Nov-1964

Date of most recent amendment: 01-Aug-1994


Ordnance survey map of Yarnbury henge monument
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: North Yorkshire

District: Craven (District Authority)

Parish: Grassington


National Grid Reference: SE 01406 65415


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

Reasons for Designation

Henges are ritual or ceremonial centres which date to the Late Neolithic period (2800-2000 BC). They were constructed as roughly circular or oval- shaped enclosures comprising a flat area over 20m in diameter enclosed by a ditch and external bank. One, two or four entrances provided access to the interior of the monument, which may have contained a variety of features including timber or stone circles, post or stone alignments, pits, burials or central mounds. Finds from the ditches and interiors of henges provide important evidence for the chronological development of the sites, the types of activity that occurred within them and the nature of the environment in which they were constructed. Henges occur throughout England with the exception of south-eastern counties and the Welsh Marches. They are generally situated on low ground, often close to springs and water-courses. Henges are rare nationally with about 80 known examples. As one of the few types of identified Neolithic structures and in view of their comparative rarity, all henges are considered to be of national importance.

Yarnbury henge monument is a well preserved example of this relatively rare monument type. Although the site has been partially excavated, undisturbed areas particularly the ditch will retain environmental evidence relating to the landscape in which the monument was constructed.


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


The well preserved henge monument at Yarnbury is situated on a slight south east facing gradient 400m north east of Mire House. It includes a circular ditch with an external bank and entrance causeway on the south east side. The central enclosure has an approximate diameter of 20m by 22m with the surrounding rock cut ditch 3.5m wide and 0.25m deep. The outer turf covered stony bank is 3m-4m wide with a maximum height of 0.5m. The single clearly defined causeway entrance has a width of approximately 2m. An area about 10m in diameter to the north of the entrance has been destroyed by modern quarrying; this has sectioned the bank exposing its earth and stone structure. There is a slight mutilation to the bank and ditch about 2m to the west of the entrance and the entrance causeway itself has sustained damage on its south side. The monument was partially excavated in 1964 by Mr D Dymond of the Royal Commission on the Historic Monuments of England.

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: 24480

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Raistrick, Dr A, 'Yorkshire Archaeological Journal.' in Yorkshire Archaeological Journal, , Vol. 41, (1965), 323-4
Raistrick, Dr A, 'Yorkshire Archaeological Journal.' in Yorkshire Archaeological Journal, , Vol. 29, (1929), 364
Wainwright, G J, 'Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society.' in , , Vol. 35, (1969), 124

End of official listing