Ring cairn on Gayles Plantation, 390m ENE of Shooters Well


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1014329

Date first listed: 04-Mar-1996


Ordnance survey map of Ring cairn on Gayles Plantation, 390m ENE of Shooters Well
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: North Yorkshire

District: Richmondshire (District Authority)

Parish: Gayles

National Grid Reference: NZ 10764 06118


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

Reasons for Designation

A ring cairn is a prehistoric ritual monument comprising a circular bank of stones up to 20m in diameter surrounding a hollow central area. The bank may be kerbed on the inside, and sometimes on the outside as well, with small uprights or laid boulders. Ring cairns are found mainly in upland areas of England and are mostly discovered and authenticated by fieldwork and ground level survey, although a few are large enough to be visible on aerial photographs. They often occur in pairs or small groups of up to four examples. Occasionally they lie within round barrow cemeteries. Ring cairns are interpreted as ritual monuments of Early and Middle Bronze Age date. The exact nature of the rituals concerned is not fully understood, but excavation has revealed pits, some containing burials and others containing charcoal and pottery, taken to indicate feasting activities associated with the burial rituals. Many areas of upland have not yet been surveyed in detail and the number of ring cairns in England is not accurately known. However, available evidence indicates a population of between 250 and 500 examples. As a relatively rare class of monument exhibiting considerable variation in form, all positively identified examples retaining significant archaeological deposits are considered worthy of preservation.

Although the ring cairn has been partly disturbed, much of it survives intact including a section of its outer kerb and will retain further archaeological deposits. The ring cairn is one of a group of prehistoric ritual monuments which include prehistoric carved stones and cairns on Gayles Moor and represent an important prehistoric landscape.


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


The monument includes a small ring cairn which lies 20m south west of Stone Man Plantation and 390m ENE of Shooters Well in open moorland and under thick heather. It has a diameter of 5m with a stone bank 1m wide and 0.15m high. The stone bank has been disturbed on the east side of the cairn. The bank is most distinct on the south side and the remains of a stone kerb is also visible around the southern outer edge of the bank. Its grid reference by Global Positioning System is NZ1076406117. A group of prehistoric carved stones and small cairns are situated close to the ring cairn. These are the subjects of separate schedulings.

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: 28403

Legacy System: RSM


Laurie, T,

End of official listing