Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Romano-British settlement, 450m east of High Borrans

A Scheduled Monument in Windermere, Cumbria

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Latitude: 54.4012 / 54°24'4"N

Longitude: -2.8682 / 2°52'5"W

OS Eastings: 343734.272997

OS Northings: 500984.111508

OS Grid: NY437009

Mapcode National: GBR 8KDK.V2

Mapcode Global: WH82F.XMCT

Entry Name: Romano-British settlement, 450m east of High Borrans

Scheduled Date: 30 March 1925

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007192

English Heritage Legacy ID: CU 187

County: Cumbria

Civil Parish: Windermere

Traditional County: Westmorland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Hugill or Ings St Anne

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


The monument includes the earthwork remains of a settlement enclosure and associated hut circles of Romano-British date, situated on a south facing slope leading down to the River Gowan 750m to the south. The D-shaped enclosure, which is preserved as an earthwork, covers an area of approximately 0.9ha. and is denoted by an earth and stone bank. The enclosure has entrances on its west, south and east sides and its interior is sub-divided into a series of compartments by internal partitions in the form of low earth and stone banks. Also within the interior are a number of hut circles, varying in diameter from 3m to 8m, which are set on levelled terraced platforms cut into the slope of the hill. A modern boundary wall, which sits on top of the majority of the outer bank of the enclosure, is excluded from the scheduling, however, the ground beneath it is included.

PastScape Monument No:- 10951
Cumbria HER:- 1907

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

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.
The Romano-British settlement, 450m east of High Borrans is well-preserved with upstanding remains in the form of banks and hut circles. The monument will contain archaeological deposits relating to its construction, use and abandonment and environmental deposits relating to the use of the surrounding landscape. The monument is a good example of its type and provides insight into the character of settlement and subsistence during the Romano-British period.

Source: Historic England

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