Lob Wells Shelter


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012803

Date first listed: 11-Mar-1991


Ordnance survey map of Lob Wells Shelter
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Rotherham (Metropolitan Authority)

Parish: Thorpe Salvin

National Grid Reference: SK 53146 80358

Reasons for Designation

Palaeolithic caves and rock shelters provide some of the earliest evidence of human activity in the period from about 400,000 to 10,000 years ago. The sites, all natural topographic features, occur mainly in hard limestone in the north and west of the country, although examples also exist in the softer rocks of south-east England. Evidence for human occupation is often located near the cave entrances, close to the rock walls or on the exterior platforms. The interiors sometimes served as special areas for disposal and storage or were places where material naturally accumulated from the outside. Because of the special conditions of deposition and preservation, organic and other fragile materials often survive well and in stratigraphic association. Caves and rock shelters are therefore of major importance for understanding this period. Due to their comparative rarity, their considerable age and their longevity as a monument type, all examples with good survival of deposits are considered to be nationally important.

The Palaeolithic Caves of Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and South Yorkshire belong to a major regional group of which Lob Wells Shelter is an important example due to the quantity of surviving deposit.


Lob Wells Shelter is located on the south side of the shallow valley of the Bondhay Dike, c.250m above the risings of the Lob Wells. The site consists of a 3m overhang, 2.5m above the present floor, along a front 6m wide. During excavations carried out by G.F. White in the 1960s and 70s, Mesolithic, Neolithic and Roman material was recovered. However, the shelter also contains Later Upper Palaeolithic material, including retouched tools. Only a small area immediately beneath the overhang has been investigated. Other areas, including the talus slope have been left undisturbed. In addition, in situ material survives below the level of the excavations which did not reach bedrock. The monument includes all deposits within the cave, and outside the cave it includes an area of 10m radius from the cave entrance.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.


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

Legacy System number: 13241

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Campbell, J B, The Upper Palaeolithic of Britain, (1977)
Jacobi, R M, 'Culture and Environment in Prehistoric Wales: Selected Essays' in The Upper Palaeolithic of Britain with special ref. to Wales, (1980), 15-100
Jenkinson, R D S, The Archaeological caves and rockshelters in the Creswell Crags, 1978, Pamphlet

End of official listing