Romano-British settlement 810m south of Slippery Crags


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1019397

Date first listed: 03-Jul-2000


Ordnance survey map of Romano-British settlement 810m south of Slippery Crags
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Northumberland (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Alwinton


National Grid Reference: NT 88926 04109


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 having sustained some military damage on its western side, the settlement 810m south of Slippery Crags near Wilkwood East is otherwise well preserved and retains significant archaeological deposits. It is one of a group of similar monuments in the area which taken together will add greatly to our knowledge and understanding of late prehistoric and Romano-British settlement and activity.


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


The monument includes the remains of a settlement of Romano-British date, situated near the apex of a promontory on ground which slopes slightly to the south east. The settlement is visible as a roughly circular enclosure measuring 28m north to south by 25m east to west, within a surrounding bank of stone up to 3m wide and standing to 1m high. There is an entrance 1.5m wide in the south west side of the enclosure, with a recumbent stone door jamb on the eastern side. At the south west corner of the enclosure, two conjoining hut circles are attached to, and open onto the enclosure; the hut circles are 5m in diameter and are defined by low banks of stone 1m wide and standing to a maximum height of 0.5m high.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.


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

Legacy System number: 32740

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
The Archaeology Practice, , Recommendations for an Archaeological Management Plan, (1998), 108-9
Gates T M, TMG 14742/62-5, (1996)

End of official listing