Romano-British farmstead and a length of Roman road 800m south of Winderwath


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1020924

Date first listed: 20-May-2003


Ordnance survey map of Romano-British farmstead and a length of Roman road 800m south of Winderwath
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Cumbria

District: Eden (District Authority)

Parish: Brougham

National Grid Reference: NY 59878 28619


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 its lack of surface features, an aerial photograph clearly shows that the buried remains of a Romano-British farmstead and an adjacent length of Roman road 800m south of Winderwath survive well. The farmstead is one of a number of similar monuments located in and around the Eden valley and it will facilitate further study of Romano-British settlement patterns in the area. The Roman road was constructed during the latter half of the 1st century AD. It was one of the first major Roman military roads to be built in the north of England and its construction facilitated the initial conquest and subsequent policing of this part of the province.


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


The monument includes the buried remains of a Romano-British farmstead and an approximately 570m length of Roman road located to the west of the River Eden 800m south of Winderwath. It is visible as crop marks on an aerial photograph. These crop marks consist of the dark outline of lusher vegetation growth covering an infilled ditch which surrounded the sub-rectangular farmstead, and the light outline of less vigourous vegetation growth covering the hard surface of the Roman road.

The farmstead is located on elevated ground above the river flood plain. It measures about 80m by 40m and possesses angular corners at the north west and south west sides and rounded corners at the north east and south east sides. No obvious entrances are visible on the aerial photograph, however, faint traces of a circular feature interpreted as a hut circle are visible situated within the farmstead against its north eastern corner. On the northern side of the farmstead are faint traces of two other linear crop marks joined by a rounded corner which suggest that the farmstead is of two phases and may have been either enlarged or reduced in size during its period of occupation. The Roman road runs along lower ground to the south of the farmstead. At NY59622860, at the point where the present A66 trunk roads curves to the ESE to begin its approach to Eden Bridge, the Roman road continues on an eastern alignment for about 520m until, as can be seen on the aerial photograph, it bends sharply to the south east. From here it proceeds for a distance of about 50m in the direction of a crossing point of the river which may have lain a short distance to the north of the modern bridge. The Roman road is thought to have been built during the AD70s and connected the military establishments of York and Carlisle. The road's construction formed part of the Roman military advance northwards from legionary bases at York and Chester up to the Tyne-Solway gap.

All modern field boundaries 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.


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

Legacy System number: 34995

Legacy System: RSM


AP No. 83/600285 N13, Cambridge University Collection, Crop Marks 3 mile NW of Kirkby Thore, Westmorland,
Cambridge University Collection, Crop Marks 3 mile NW of Kirkby Thore, Westmorland,

End of official listing