Ancient Monuments

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Infell Wood medieval enclosure, 550m north west of Scargreen

A Scheduled Monument in Ponsonby, Cumbria

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Latitude: 54.4418 / 54°26'30"N

Longitude: -3.4502 / 3°27'0"W

OS Eastings: 306047.393503

OS Northings: 506122.546393

OS Grid: NY060061

Mapcode National: GBR 4KB2.VH

Mapcode Global: WH5ZP.ZM66

Entry Name: Infell Wood medieval enclosure, 550m north west of Scargreen

Scheduled Date: 6 January 1972

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007115

English Heritage Legacy ID: CU 390

County: Cumbria

Civil Parish: Ponsonby

Traditional County: Cumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Beckermet St Bridget

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


The monument includes the remains of a medieval enclosure situated on a north east facing slope just off the brow of a hill overlooking the valley of Scargreen Beck. The enclosure is rectangular in plan and measures approximately 75m by 50m. It is surrounded by a shallow ditch and a double 1.5m high bank with entrances on its east and south west sides. Within the north angle of the enclosure is an infilled circular pond with a diameter of 13.5m. The form and non-defensive location of the enclosure have been understood to indicate that it is a pele garth, or a stock enclosure containing a pele tower.

PastScape Monument No:- 8632
Lake District National Park HER:- 5402

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Tower houses are a type of defensible house particularly characteristic of the borderlands of England and Scotland. Virtually every parish had at least one of these buildings. Solitary towers were normally accompanied by a small outer enclosure defined by a timber or stone wall and called a barmkin. Tower houses were being constructed and used from at least the 13th century to the end of the 16th century. They provided prestigious defended houses permanently occupied by the wealthier and aristocratic members of society. As such, they were important centres of medieval life. The need for such secure buildings relates to the unsettled and frequently war-like conditions which prevailed in the Borders throughout much of the medieval period. Around 200 examples of tower houses have been identified of which less than half are of the free- standing or solitary tower type. All surviving solitary towers retaining significant medieval remains will normally be identified as nationally important.
Infell Wood medieval enclosure, 550m north west of Scargreen survives well and provides insight into the character of enclosed residences during the medieval period. The monument is representative of its period and its region and will contain archaeological deposits relating to its construction, use and abandonment.

Source: Historic England

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