Romano-British farmstead 700m east of Whingill


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018062

Date first listed: 29-Apr-1998


Ordnance survey map of Romano-British farmstead 700m east of Whingill
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Cumbria

District: Eden (District Authority)

Parish: Hartley

National Grid Reference: NY 79504 09573


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

Reasons for Designation

In Cumbria and Northumberland several distinctive types of native settlements dating to the Roman period have been identified. The majority were small, non- defensive, enclosed homesteads or farms. In many areas they were of stone construction, although in the coastal lowlands timber-built variants were also common. In much of Northumberland, especially in the Cheviots, the enclosures were curvilinear in form. Further south a rectangular form was more common. Elsewhere, especially near the Scottish border, another type occurs where the settlement enclosure was `scooped' into the hillslope. Frequently the enclosures reveal a regularity and similarity of internal layout. The standard layout included one or more stone round-houses situated towards the rear of the enclosure, facing the single entranceway. In front of the houses were pathways and small enclosed yards. Homesteads normally had only one or two houses, but larger enclosures could contain as many as six. At some sites the settlement appears to have grown, often with houses spilling out of the main enclosure and clustered around it. At these sites up to 30 houses may be found. In the Cumbrian uplands the settlements were of less regimented form and unenclosed clusters of houses of broadly contemporary date are also known. These homesteads were being constructed and used by non-Roman natives throughout the period of the Roman occupation. Their origins lie in settlement forms developed before the arrival of the Romans. These homesteads are common throughout the uplands where they frequently survive as well-preserved earthworks. In lowland coastal areas they were also originally common, although there they can frequently only be located through aerial photography. All homestead sites which survive substantially intact will normally be identified as nationally important.

Despite some minor damage by ridge and furrow ploughing, the Romano-British farmstead 700m east of Whingill survives reasonably well and is a good example of this class of monument. It is one of a number of similar monuments located on the limestone hillsides of east Cumbria and will facilitate any further study of Romano-British settlement patterns in this area.


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


The monument includes the earthworks and buried remains of a Romano-British farmstead located on a gently-sloping south west-facing hillside 700m east of Whingill. It includes a cluster of at least six small sub-rectangular enclosures, some of which would have functioned as stock pens while at least one would have contained a hut or huts where the occupants dwelt. Traces of a low earth and rubble boundary wall survive on the monument's west side. An enclosure at the north west side is the best surviving one of the group; it measures approximately 12m square internally with a surrounding wall up to 3m wide and 1m high. To its south east there is a sub-rectangular enclosure with an internal subdivision and an entrance at the south side of its eastern partition. To the south west of this are three attached enclosures; the northern one has an entrance on its north side, the central one appears subdivided with entrances on its south side, and the southern enclosure has an entrance on its north side. The eastern side of the farmstead is defined by a low earth and rubble bank with traces of a small square enclosure at its northern end. A cross wall or bank runs westwards for a short distance from this eastern bank forming another subdivision within the farmstead.

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: 27808

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Higham, N, Jones, N, 'Archaeological Journal' in Frontiers, Forts and Farmers, , Vol. 132, (1975)
AP No. MU CS 45,14, Manchester University, Hartley,
SMR No. 3445, Cumbria SMR, Hartley, (1985)

End of official listing