Section of double linear boundary dyke 300m north east of Millington Grange Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1015573

Date first listed: 17-Dec-1929

Date of most recent amendment: 18-Apr-1997


Ordnance survey map of Section of double linear boundary dyke 300m north east of Millington Grange Farm
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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 83519 55118


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 well for most of its length, 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 290m section of Bronze Age double linear boundary banks and ditches (also known as a dyke) running north east-south west through a wooded valley north of Millington Grange, leading north to the junction of Scoar Dale and towards Millington Wold and Far Out Field. 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 abut. 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, but is thought to have once formed of part of a continuous length of boundary banks and ditches with other monuments in this area. At its southern end, which is not thought to be an original terminal, the monument includes a short section of single bank and ditch running ENE at the entrance of a shallow wooded valley. The bank here is around 1.25m high and about 6m wide at its base, and the shallow, nearly infilled ditch lies to the north western side of the bank, and is around 2m wide. From about 50m to the east the line of the monument is better preserved with the bank rising to between 1.5m and 1.75m in height, with a pronounced `U' shaped ditch 2m wide at its base, making an overall height of up to 2.5m from the base of the ditch to the top of the bank. The monument then becomes a double bank with a single intervening ditch, and then a double bank with double intervening ditches for a short distance, still keeping the same ENE direction through woodland, with a footpath lying along its northern edge. Where it is best preserved, towards its central part, the first bank of the monument, to the east, is between 2m and 2.5m high, 2m wide at its top and 8m at its bottom. The first ditch, flanking it to the west, is `U' shaped, being about 2m wide at the bottom and 6m wide at the top. The second bank is somewhat lower than the first, being about 1.5m in height, 2m across the top and 6m along the base, and the second ditch flanking the second bank along its northerly side is shallow, `U' shaped and 2m wide. The whole dyke system here is up to 40m wide from one side to the other. As the monument heads east through woodland in the direction of Scoar Dale and a field boundary to the east, the double bank and double ditch system merges to become a single bank and ditch once more and then rapidly dwindles and disappears into fields west of Scoar Dale. This end is not thought to be an original terminus, but to have once joined the dyke section further along the valley to the north, which is the subject of a separate scheduling. Modern post and wire fences and constructions associated with a radio mast, including the mast itself, 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: 26589

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