Section of Danes' Dyke from the B1229 north to Wold Farm field boundary


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013193

Date first listed: 30-Aug-1922

Date of most recent amendment: 29-Aug-1995


Ordnance survey map of Section of Danes' Dyke from the B1229 north to Wold Farm field boundary
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1013193 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 17-Dec-2018 at 04:36:45.


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

District: East Riding of Yorkshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Bempton

District: East Riding of Yorkshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Flamborough

National Grid Reference: TA 21251 71395


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

Reasons for Designation

Linear boundaries are substantial earthwork features comprising single or multiple ditches and banks which may extend over distances varying between less than 1km to over 10km. They survive as earthworks or as linear features visible as cropmarks on aerial photographs or as a combination of both. The evidence of excavation and study of associated monuments demonstrate that their construction spans the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although they may have been re-used later. The scale of many linear boundaries has been taken to indicate that they were constructed by large social groups and were used to mark important boundaries in the landscape; their impressive scale displaying the corporate prestige of their builders. They would have been powerful symbols, often with religious associations, used to define and order the territorial holdings of those groups who constructed them. Linear earthworks are of considerable importance for the analysis of settlement and land use in the Bronze Age; all well preserved examples will normally merit statutory protection.

The Danes' Dyke is extremely well preserved and remains a significant boundary in the modern landscape. It will retain important archaeological and environmental information relating to the date of its construction and function, together with evidence of the contemporary climate and ecology of the locality and subsequent history of use.


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


The monument includes the central section of the linear bank and ditch system known as the Danes' Dyke, which in its entirety runs from the coast north of Flamborough Head south for a distance of two and a half miles, enclosing an area of approximately five square miles of headland. This section of the dyke extends from the northern side of the B1259 road and to an eastward projecting bend in the earthwork, linked to a field boundary and aligned on Wold Farm.

The Danes' Dyke is thought to have been constructed in the Bronze Age along with other linear earthworks on the nearby Yorkshire Wolds. Its name, however, suggests a later date and it would seem likely that it was reused as a defensive earthwork both by Iron Age tribes and probably also at some point in the late ninth and tenth centuries AD. The dyke effectively cuts off the Flamborough peninsula, which is also naturally defended on all sides by steep chalk cliffs, converting it into a promontory fort. The area thus enclosed is large enough and has sufficient resources to support a sizeable community, with sources of fresh water available. To the north of the B1229, the dyke continues nearly straight, although bending slightly west, then back northward. The bank is around 3m high, and the ditch over 2m deep and wet in parts.

There are three gaps in the bank of uncertain origin, although probably made to facilitate passage at periods subsequent to the construction of the earthwork. The central gap has a slight eastward directioned turn to the bank, paralleled by the ditch, and may be original. The gap at the northernmost point of this section, where the Wold Farm field boundary aligns on the more pronounced eastward bend of the dyke, has a second bank on the west side of the ditch and is thought to be a later reconstruction of the defences during antiquity.

Although the sections of the dyke system across the Flamborough peninsula abut each other, for purposes of clarity and administration, the sections have been defined as separate schedulings.

Modern post and wire fences dividing the dyke from agricultural land bounding it to the east and the west are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 5 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: 26508

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of East Riding of Yorkshire, (1974), 151-152
Mortimer, J R , Forty Years Researches in British and Saxon Burial Mounds of East Yorkshire, (1905), p367
Pitt-Rivers, Major General, Papers of the British Association, (1881), p690
Ramm, H, 'RAI Summer Meeting Proceedings, 18/7/84' in Danes' Dyke, Flamborough (TA216694-213732), (1984), pp37-39
Bastow, M E, Ancient Monuments Record Form, AM107, (1987)
Information held by Humberside SMR, Various, (1994)
Scheduled Ancient Monuments Record, (1988)

End of official listing