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Prehistoric defended enclosure and six adjacent hut circles at Tatham Park

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Prehistoric defended enclosure and six adjacent hut circles at Tatham Park

List entry Number: 1012817

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Lancashire

District: Lancaster

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Tatham

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 20-Oct-1980

Date of most recent amendment: 07-Jul-1995

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 23764

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

Reasons for Designation

During the mid-prehistoric period (seventh to fifth centuries BC) a variety of different types of defensive settlements began to be constructed and occupied in the northern uplands of England. The most obvious sites were hillforts built in prominent locations. In addition to these a range of smaller sites, sometimes with an enclosed area of less than 1ha and defined as defended settlements, were also constructed. Some of these were located on hilltops, others are found in less prominent positions. The enclosing defences were of earthen construction, some sites having a single bank and ditch (univallate), others having more than one (multivallate). At some sites these earthen ramparts represent a second phase of defence, the first having been a timber fence or palisade. Within the enclosure a number of stone or timber-built round houses were occupied by the inhabitants. Stock may also have been kept in these houses, especially during the cold winter months, or in enclosed yards outside them. The communities occupying these sites were probably single family groups, the defended settlements being used as farmsteads. Construction and use of this type of site extended over several centuries, possibly through to the early Romano-British period (mid to late first century AD). Defended settlements are a rare monument type. They were an important element of the later prehistoric settlement pattern of the northern uplands and are important for any study of the developing use of fortified settlements during this period. All well-preserved examples are believed to be of national importance.

The monument survives well. It is a rare example in Lancashire of a prehistoric defended enclosure with outlying hut circles, the whole of which is protected by an outer defensive ditch, and illustrates well the diversity in form of this class of monument. It overlooks the confluence of two tributaries of the River Lune and is one of a number of prehistoric and Romano-British settlements similarly located in close proximity to the Lune valley. The monument will contribute to any further study of early settlements patterns in the area.

History

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

Details

The monument includes a prehistoric defended enclosure and six hut circles located on a small hillock, around the base of which a defensive ditch has been cut on three sides. The site is located above the confluence of the Rivers Wenning and Hindburn, tributaries of the River Lune. The main hilltop enclosure measures approximately 70m by 50m and is divided into two parts by a linear stone and earth bank 2m-3m wide and up to 1.5m high in places. It is roughly oval in shape with its boundary bank being curvilinear on the northern side and more angular on the southern side. There are three entrances, one at the mid-point of the east side giving access directly into the northern part of the enclosure and through a passageway into the southern part, and two entrances on the west and south west sides giving access into the southern part of the enclosure. Internally there is a sub-circular scooped enclosure at the north eastern side of the northern part and traces of a slightly banked enclosure at the north western side of the southern part. Externally a low bank curves from the southern side of the enclosure in a north westerly direction for approximately 40m. On the hillslope below and outside the enclosure there are six levelled circular platforms interpreted as hut circles. Two are located to the west of the main enclosure, one to the north, and three to the east. Surrounding the base of the hillock on all sides except the south, and thus enclosing the hut circles and the main enclosure, is a defensive ditch measuring 4m-14m wide by 0.5m deep. On the southern side, defence is afforded by a small stream. A drystone wall crossing the northern part of the site is excluded from the scheduling but the ground beneath the wall 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.

Selected Sources

Other
FMW Report, Capstick, B., Iran Age or Romano-British settlement, Tatham Park, (1990)
FMW Report, Capstick, B., Iran Age or Romano-British settlement, Tatham Park, (1990)
FMW Report, Capstick, B., Iron Age or Romano-British settlement, Tatham Park, (1990)
FMW Report, Capstick, B., Iron Age or Romano-British settlement, Tatham Park, (1990)
In Lancs SMR Ref. No. 2678, Turner, R C, Tatham Park, (1978)
In Lancs SMR Ref. No. 2678, Turner, R C, Tatham Park, (1978)
In Lancs SMR Ref. No. 2678, Turner, R C, Tatham Park, (1978)
In Lancs SMR Ref. No. 2678, Turner, R C, Tatham Park, (1978)
SMR Ref No. 2678, Lancs SMR, Tatham Hall Farm, (1984)

National Grid Reference: SD 61085 68467

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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This copy shows the entry on 21-Nov-2017 at 12:24:23.

End of official listing