Roman period native settlement in Poolscar Wood, 350m south of Stubbings Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018552

Date first listed: 21-Jan-1999


Ordnance survey map of Roman period native settlement in Poolscar Wood, 350m south of Stubbings Farm
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Leeds (Metropolitan Authority)

Parish: Otley

National Grid Reference: SE 22171 44608


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

Reasons for Designation

The Pennine uplands of northern England contain a wide variety of prehistoric remains, including cairns, enclosures, carved rocks, settlements and field systems. These are evidence of the widespread exploitation of these uplands throughout later prehistory. During the last millennium BC a variety of different types of enclosed settlements developed. These include hillforts, which have substantial earthworks and are usually located on hilltops. Other types of enclosed settlement of this period are less obviously defensive, as they have less substantial earthworks and are usually in less prominent positions. In the Pennines a number of late prehistoric enclosed settlements survive as upstanding monuments. Where upstanding earthworks survive, the settlements are between 0.4ha and 10ha in area, and are usually located on ridges or hillside terraces. The enclosing earthworks are usually slight, most consisting of a ditch with an internal bank, or with an internal and external bank, but examples with an internal ditch and with no ditch are known. They are sub-circular, sub-rectangular, or oval in shape. Few of these enclosed settlements have been subject to systematic excavation, but they are thought to date from between the Late Bronze Age to the Romano-British period (c.1000 BC-AD 400). Examples which have been excavated have presented evidence of settlement. Some appear to have developed from earlier palisaded enclosures. Unexcavated examples occasionally have levelled areas which may have contained buildings, but a proportion may have functioned primarily as stock enclosures. Enclosed settlements are a distinctive feature of the late prehistory of the Pennine uplands, and are important in illustrating the variety of enclosed settlement types which developed in many areas of Britain at this time. Examples where a substantial proportion of the enclosed settlement survives are considered to be nationally important.

The Roman period native settlement in Poolscar Wood survives well. It is outside the region in which such settlement is thought typical, and thus provides a significant contribution to the understanding of the nature and distribution of Romano-British settlement in northern England.


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


The monument includes an oval enclosure, scooped into the hillside in Poolscar Wood, on Otley Chevin. It originally had a small annexe on the north side, but this has been destroyed by a forestry track. The main enclosure is bounded on the south by a scarp where it is scooped into the hillside. The remainder of the enclosure is bounded by a rubble bank with occasional large boulders, some of which are set on edge. The rubble bank varies from a slight bank or scarp on the north and west sides, to a substantial bank, about 5m wide and 1m high close to the entrance on the east side. Geophysical survey has provided evidence for a possible hut circle in the north west corner of the enclosure. Trial excavation produced pottery of Roman date. The occupation of this settlement may be contemporary with the use of a rubble-banked enclosure complex in nearby Danefield Wood.

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: 31501

Legacy System: RSM


Site II, WYAS, Danefield Wood Otley Chevin West Yorkshire, (1997)

End of official listing