Section of double linear boundary dyke west of Far Out Field, Millington Wold


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1015572

Date first listed: 17-Dec-1929

Date of most recent amendment: 18-Apr-1997


Ordnance survey map of Section of double linear boundary dyke west of Far Out Field, Millington Wold
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: East Riding of Yorkshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Millington

National Grid Reference: SE 83874 55668


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 monument is part of a very extensive and important system of linear boundary dykes in this area of the Yorkshire Wolds, dating back to the Bronze Age. It survives moderately well for most of its length, despite some damage to the monument caused by plantation activity in the past, particularly at its southern end, and is a rare example of a double complex of banks and ditches. It is closely associated with other adjacent complexes of linear banks and ditches, which together form an integral system of boundary and defensive earthworks in this region. As such it offers important insights into ancient land use and territorial divisions for social, ritual and agricultural purposes in this area of the Yorkshire Wolds.


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


The monument includes a 200m section of Bronze Age double linear boundary banks and ditches (also known as a dyke) running north-south through forestry plantation to the west of Far Out Field, Millington Wold. Lying close to an ancient trackway on the western side of the Wolds, the surviving part of which forms the present-day Wolds Way, the monument forms a relatively short section of an elaborate complex of boundary dykes between Millington and Huggate Wolds and Huggate Pasture, single components of which run either along the top of the escarpment, or part the way down the sides of the intervening dry valley systems of Frendal Dale and Tun Dale, south in the direction of Pasture Dale, Millington Dale and Cow Moor, or north and west towards Millington Wold and Millington Lings, linking up with the boundary dykes in those areas. These dykes were used to enhance the natural topographical barriers of spurs and escarpments between valleys, with additional physical barriers of banks and ditches. Natural conduits along the floors of dry valleys were then `blocked' by other bank and ditch systems to control access. Well preserved sections of these linear boundaries are the subject of separate schedulings, and in some cases, adjacent monuments may physically touch. This elaborate complex of boundary earthworks is one of the best preserved remnants of the original more extensive systems recorded and mapped by early antiquarians such as J R Mortimer in the 19th century. Excavations and observation of spatial relationships with other earthworks of known date demonstrate this Wolds complex of earthworks to have originated in the later Bronze Age, with several subsequent phases of elaboration and augmentation. The monument also forms part of a broadly related and extensive complex of multi-period prehistoric earthworks, including bowl barrows, barrow cemeteries, linear bank and ditch systems, trackways and enclosures dispersed across Huggate and Warter Wolds, and Huggate and Millington Pastures. This short section of linear bank and ditch is not a discrete monument, as neither its eastern or western ends is thought to be the original terminus, but are thought to have formed a continuous length of boundary banks and ditches with other monuments in this area. At its northern end, this monument includes two banks and two ditches, running south as a single system through a shallow wooded valley between High Callis Wold and Millington Wold. To the east of the monument, a trackway overlies and obscures what is thought to have been a third ditch lying parallel with the first bank of the system. The first bank varies in height from 0.5m to 2m high, depending upon its level of preservation, and is around 6m broad across at its base. The ditch lying parallel with it to its western side is shallow and `U' shaped in profile, measuring approximately 3m across and no more than 0.4m deep. The second bank, lying to the west of the first bank and ditch, is around 0.5m to 1m high, and the lower of the two banks at the northern end of the monument. The ditch flanking the western side of the second bank is very shallow and poorly defined, being now nearly completely infilled, and is about 2m wide, and probably no more than 0.2m deep, lying alongside the rise in land to the west leading up into arable fields west towards Callis Wold. As the two banks head south, the first merges with the line of the trackway on its eastern side and disappears, and the second bank continues to become the main element in the system. The second, and now only visible bank, is between 5m-6m wide across its top and 6m-8m across the base, and as it continues south, with its eastern side now conforming to the line of the woodland trackway, it is from 2m-3m high, measured from the level of the track to the east, but only between 0.3m and 0.5m high from the western side of the valley edge along which it lies, and it is around 3m wide across its top. At this point the bank clearly augments the side of the valley, falling off steeply down to the east. The ditch to its west gradually becomes completely infilled, and is eventually no longer visible, although it will survive as a buried feature. The line of the monument eventually disappears into a deeply pitted and cratered area at its southern end. There is a small `nose'-shaped projection surviving, which is thought to be the remains of the main (second) bank here, but this part is not at all well preserved, and is not thought to be an original terminus, as the system will have continued further south and west to link up with the next section of dyke north of Millington Grange, which is the subject of a separate scheduling. Modern post and wire fences and forestry equipment and constructions 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 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: 26588

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Mortimer, J R , Forty Years Researches in British and Saxon Burial Mounds of East Yorkshire, (1905), 365-380
Dent, J, 'Archaeological Journal' in The Yorkshire Dykes, , Vol. 141, (1984), 32-33
Halkon, P, 'Prehistory Research Section Bulletin' in The Huggate Dykes, , Vol. 30, (1993), 10
Manby, T, 'Current Archaeology' in The Yorkshire Dykes, , Vol. 67, (1979), 233
Humberside SMR, Sites and Monuments Records Sheet, (1994)

End of official listing