Cairnfield and field system 560m east of Park Gate Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018999

Date first listed: 11-Feb-2000


Ordnance survey map of Cairnfield and field system 560m east of Park Gate Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1018999 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 23-Jan-2019 at 17:41:27.


The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Derbyshire

District: Derbyshire Dales (District Authority)

Parish: Baslow and Bubnell

County: Derbyshire

District: Derbyshire Dales (District Authority)

Parish: Chatsworth

National Park: PEAK DISTRICT

National Grid Reference: SK 27670 71111


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

Reasons for Designation

The East Moors in Derbyshire includes all the gritstone moors east of the River Derwent. It covers an area of 105 sq km, of which around 63% is open moorland and 37% is enclosed. As a result of recent and on-going archaeological survey, the East Moors area is becoming one of the best recorded upland areas in England. On the enclosed land the archaeological remains are fragmentary, but survive sufficiently well to show that early human activity extended beyond the confines of the open moors. On the open moors there is significant and well-articulated evidence over extensive areas for human exploitation of the gritstone uplands from the Neolithic to the post-medieval periods. Bronze Age activity accounts for the most intensive use of the moorlands. Evidence for it includes some of the largest and best preserved field systems and cairnfields in northern England as well settlement sites, numerous burial monuments, stone circles and other ceremonial remains which, together, provide a detailed insight into life in the Bronze Age. Also of importance is the well preserved and often visible relationship between the remains of earlier and later periods since this provides an insight into successive changes in land use through time. A large number of the prehistoric sites on the moors, because of their rarity in a national context, excellent state of preservation and inter-connections, will be identified as nationally important.

Cairnfields are concentrations of cairns sited in close proximity to one another. They often consist largely of clearance cairns, built with stone cleared from the surrounding land surface to improve its use for agriculture and on occasions their distribution pattern can be seen to define field plots. Occasionally, some of the cairns were used for funerary purposes although without excavation it is difficult to determine which cairns contain burials. Clearance cairns were constructed from the Neolithic period (from c.3,400 BC) although the majority date from the Bronze Age (2,000-700 BC). Cairnfields can also retain information concerning the development of land use and agricultural practices as well as the diversity of beliefs and social organisation during the prehistoric period. Linear field systems date from the Bronze Age to the fifth century AD. They usually comprise a discrete block of fields oriented in roughly the same direction. Individual fields can be square, rectangular, long and narrow, triangular or polygonal in shape. The development of field systems is seen as a response to the competition for land which began during the later prehistoric period. The majority are thought to have been used mainly for crop production. They represent a coherent economic unit often utilised for long periods of time and can thus provide important information about developments in agricultural practices in a particular location and broader patterns of social, cultural and environmental change over several centuries. Those which survive well and can be linked to associated settlements are considered worthy of protection. The cairnfield and field system 560m east of Park Gate Farm survives reasonably well and provides an insight into Bronze Age agricultural use of Gibbet Moor.


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


The monument includes a group of prehistoric cairns occupying a field enclosure on the western edge of Gibbet Moor. The cairns are associated with short lengths of linear clearance and are interpreted as Bronze Age cultivation features. To the east of the cairnfield and linear clearance is an extensive area of open moorland containing much evidence for Bronze Age settlement, which is the subject of a separate scheduling. The cairnfield and linear clearance were once part of the overall settlement complex but are now separated from the other remains by recent enclosure and improvement of the land. There are approximately 20 surviving cairns standing within the northern part of the field enclosure forming a discrete cairnfield. They are of various sizes with most being in the order of 2m-3m in diameter. Within the cairnfield are short stretches of linear clearance indicating that the area was once divided into field plots used for cultivation. Such division was likely to have been by hedges or fences with stone debris being placed or thrown against them, forming the features visible today. Some of the cairns are elongated where they, too, were likely to have been along the line of field divisions. All modern drystone walls, gates and fences 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 5 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: 31269

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Barnatt, J W, The Chatsworth Estate Historic Landscape Survey (Moorlands), (1998)
Barnatt, J W, 'Derbyshire Archaeological Journal' in Bronze Age Remains on the East Moors of the Peak District, (1986), 53-5
Barnatt, J W, 'Derbyshire Archaeological Journal' in Bronze Age Remains on the East Moors of the Peak District, (1986), 53-5

End of official listing