Medieval village of Lazenby


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018950

Date first listed: 04-Oct-1957

Date of most recent amendment: 02-Jul-1999


Ordnance survey map of Medieval village of Lazenby
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: North Yorkshire

District: Hambleton (District Authority)

Parish: Danby Wiske with Lazenby

National Grid Reference: SE 33976 98581


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

Reasons for Designation

Medieval rural settlements in England were marked by great regional diversity in form, size and type, and the protection of their archaeological remains needs to take these differences into account. To do this, England has been divided into three broad Provinces on the basis of each area's distinctive mixture of nucleated and dispersed settlements. These can be further divided into sub-Provinces and local regions, possessing characteristics which have gradually evolved during the past 1500 years or more. The Northern Vale of York local region has been identified on two criteria. First, it contains low numbers of nucleations when compared with the rest of the sub-Province: village depopulation may partly account for this. Secondly, there are greater densities of dispersed settlement than is normal for the sub-Province, a phenomenon which cannot yet be fully explained.

Medieval villages were organised agricultural communities, sited at the centre of a parish or township, that shared resources such as arable land, meadow and woodland. Village plans varied enormously, but when they survive as earthworks their most distinguishing features include roads and minor tracks, platforms on which stood houses and other buildings such as barns, enclosed crofts and small enclosed paddocks. They frequently included the parish church within their boundaries, and as part of the manorial system most villages included one or more manorial centres which may survive also as visible remains as well as below ground deposits. In the Central Province of England, villages were the most distinctive aspect of rural life, and their archaeological reamins are one of the most important sources of understanding about rural life in the five or more centuries following the Norman Conquest. Medieval villages were supported by a communal system of agriculture based on large, unenclosed open arable fields. These large fields were subdivided into strips (known as landes) which were allocated to individual tennants. The cultivation of these strips with heavy ploughs pulled by oxen-teams produced long, wide ridges, and the resultant `ridge and furrow' where it survives is the most obvious physical indication of the open field system. Individual strips or landes were laid out in groups known as furlongs defined by terminal headlands at the plough turning-points and lateral grass balks. Furlongs were in turn grouped into large open fields. Well-preserved ridge and furrow, especially in its original context adjacent to village earthworks, is both an important source of information about medieval agrarian life and a distinctive contribution to the character of the historic landscape. It is usually now covered by the hedges or walls of subsequent field enclosure. The village of Lazenby survives well and significant evidence of the domestic and economic development of the settlement will be preserved.


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


The monument includes the remains of the medieval village of Lazenby. The monument is located on the east bank of the River Wiske in the lowlands south of the River Tees. The monument occupies an area around Lazenby Hall. The remains of the village include substantial earthworks representing rectangular house platforms with associated enclosures clustered around a network of hollow ways and sunken roads. There are a group of three yards or paddocks along the north boundary of the monument. In the centre of the monument is a large rectangular platform 43m north to south and 31m east to west. To the east of this is an uneven mound 1m high and 14m in diameter which may be the remains of a dovecote or a windmill base. In the south west area of the monument, in the low lying ground near the river, are the shallow earthwork remains of possible fishponds and other water management features. There is a boundary bank marking the edge of the village surviving along the north and to a lesser extent the west side of the monument. In the north east corner and north west of the monument are two small sections of preserved ridge and furrow, the remnants of the medieval field system. Lazenby Hall, which is Listed Grade II*, dates from the early 17th century, lies on the higher ground in western part of the former village and may have been the site of a manor house for the village. The Hall and its gardens and adjacent buildings and yards are not included in the monument. The village of Lazenby is mentioned in the Domesday survey of 1086 and by 1301 had 13 households. The monument lies immediately east of the current village of Danby Wiske which is a planned medieval village. It is thought that Lazenby may have been abandoned during the 14th century and the settlement focus relocated across the river into a planned settlement centred around the manor and church at the south of Danby Wiske. Lazenby Hall and associated buildings, yards and gardens are excluded from the scheduling. All other gates, fences and road surfaces are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath these features 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: 31339

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Beresford, M, 'Yorkshire Archaeological Journal' in The Lost Villages of Yorkshire Part IV, , Vol. VOL 38, (1954), 302

End of official listing