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Little Grassoms prehistoric field system, two cairnfields and six funerary cairns on Bootle Fell

List Entry Summary

This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Little Grassoms prehistoric field system, two cairnfields and six funerary cairns on Bootle Fell

List entry Number: 1019077

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Cumbria

District: Copeland

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Bootle

National Park: LAKE DISTRICT

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 23-May-1962

Date of most recent amendment: 29-Oct-1999

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 32831

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

Reasons for Designation

The Cumbrian uplands comprise large areas of remote mountainous terrain, much of which is largely open fellside. As a result of archaeological surveys between 1980 and 1990 within the Lake District National Park, these fells have become one of the best recorded upland areas in England. On the open fells there is sufficient well preserved and understood evidence over extensive areas for human exploitation of these uplands from the Neolithic to the post- medieval period. On the enclosed land and within forestry the archaeological remains are fragmentary, but they survive sufficiently well to show that human activity extended beyond the confines of the open fells. Bronze Age activity accounts for the most extensive use of the area, and evidence for it includes some of the largest and best preserved field systems and cairn fields in England, as well as settlement sites, numerous burial monuments, stone circles and other ceremonial remains. Taken together, their remains can provide a detailed insight into life in the later prehistoric period. Of additional importance is the well-preserved and often visible relationship between the remains of earlier and later periods, since this provides an understanding of changes in land use through time. Because of their rarity in a national context, excellent state of preservation and inter-connections, most prehistoric monuments on the Lake District fells will be identified as nationally important.

Little Grassoms prehistoric field system, cairnfields and funerary cairns survives well and forms part of a large area of well-preserved prehistoric landscape extending along the fellsides of south west Cumbria. The monument contains a complex and diverse group of prehistoric monument classes and together these represent evidence of long term management and exploitation of this area in prehistoric times.

History

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

Details

The monument includes the earthworks and buried remains of Little Grassoms prehistoric field system, two cairnfields and six funerary cairns. It is located on moorland either side of an unnamed tributory of Grassoms Beck, on a moderately graded natural spur formed by the confluence of Grassoms Beck and Crookley Beck on the west facing slopes of Bootle Fell, and represents evidence for the prehistoric exploitation of this landscape. The prehistoric field system is centred at about SD13828858 and includes five parallel alignments of clearance cairns and stone banks running east-west down the hillslope. These alignments functioned as boundaries defining fields 10m-30m in width and approximately 70m-150m in length. The area within the fields has been deliberately cleared of surface stone in order to facilitate unhindered use of the plough during agricultural cultivation. The larger of the two cairnfields lies either side of this field system; downhill there are eight clearance cairns and a few short lengths of stone bank whilst uphill there are about 40 clearance cairns. Also situated within the cairnfield are four funerary cairns, three of which lie downhill of the field system with one situated uphill. Of the group on the downhill side the largest is located at SD13718862 and measures 14.2m in diameter and up to 1m high with a stone kerb along its eastern edge. Slightly lower down the hill at SD13668856 is an oval shaped funerary cairn measuring 10.5m by 8.5m and 0.6m high with traces of a stone kerb on one side. Unrecorded investigation of this cairn's centre has left exposed the remains of a stone cist within which the body of the deceased would have been placed. A short distance downslope lies the smallest of this group of three funerary cairns; it is oval shaped and measures 7m by 6.5m and 0.35m high. The funerary cairn on the uphill side of the field system is located at SD13938859, possesses a stone kerb, and measures 7.5m in diameter and 0.35m high. On the southern side of the tributory of Grassoms Beck is the smaller of the two cairnfields. It contains only six clearance cairns amongst which are two funerary cairns, the largest of which is located at SD13828844 and measures 6.6m in diameter and 0.35m high while the smaller is immediately adjacent and measures about 5.3m in diameter and 0.3m high. The prehistoric remains at Little Grassoms reflect either sporadic or transient occupation over a long period. The funerary cairns have forms similar to excavated funerary cairns dated both to the Neolithic or Early Bronze Age (about 3000-1500 BC) and the Bronze Age (about 2000-700 BC).

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.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Bootle Fell Survey Catalogue, (1987)
Quartermaine, J, Leech, R H, Upland Settlement of the Lake District: Result of Recent Surveys, (1997), 2-15
Quartermaine, J, Leech, R H, Upland Settlement of the Lake District: Result of Recent Surveys, (1997), 2-15

National Grid Reference: SD 13812 88538

Map

Map
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This copy shows the entry on 18-Nov-2017 at 02:16:16.

End of official listing