Ancient Monuments

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Dykes and mounds on either side of Scandal Beck

A Scheduled Monument in Ravenstonedale, Eden

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Latitude: 54.4389 / 54°26'20"N

Longitude: -2.4309 / 2°25'51"W

OS Eastings: 372150.2652

OS Northings: 504920.9384

OS Grid: NY721049

Mapcode National: GBR CKG3.JJ

Mapcode Global: WH93L.MPND

Entry Name: Dykes and mounds on either side of Scandal Beck

Scheduled Date: 17 November 1964

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007231

English Heritage Legacy ID: CU 112

County: Eden

Civil Parish: Ravenstonedale

Traditional County: Westmorland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Ravenstonedale St Oswald

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


Field System and pillow mounds within Ravenstonedale Park.

Source: Historic England


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 25 February 2016. This record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes the remains of a field system of Iron Age/Romano-British date and a series of pillow mounds of medieval date, situated within 13 separate areas of protection located on varied topography on either side of Scandal Beck. The field system includes a series of long earthen banks with a partial ditch which run on both sides of Scandal Beck and enclose an irregularly shaped area of approximately 40-45ha. The majority of the length of the banks is preserved as upstanding earthworks measuring about 1m to 1.5m in height and 5m in width with other parts being preserved as cropmarks. Excepting the area of the pillow mounds, the scheduling covers the area of the banks themselves, rather than the land that they enclose.

Lying within the heart of the enclosed area is a series of at least 12 pillow mounds located within three distinct groups. The majority of the pillow mounds are surrounded by a continuous ditch and are preserved as upstanding earthworks and at least two of the mounds are preserved as cropmarks. The pillow mounds have a length of 16m to 20m and a width of about 6m.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Regular aggregate field systems date from the Bronze Age (2000-700 BC) to the end of the fifth century AD. They usually cover areas of up to 100ha and comprise a discrete block of fields orientated in roughly the same direction. Individual fields generally fall within the 0.1ha-3.2ha range and can be square, rectangular, long and narrow, triangular or polygonal in shape. The field boundaries can take various forms and follow straight or sinuous courses. The development of field systems is seen as a response to the competition for land which began during the later prehistoric period. The majority are thought to have been used mainly for crop production, although rotation may also have been practised in a mixed farming economy. Regular aggregate field systems occur widely and they represent a coherent economic unit often utilised for long periods of time and can thus provide important information about developments in agricultural practices in a particular location and broader patterns of social, cultural and environmental change over several centuries. Those which survive well and/or which can be positively linked to associated settlements are considered to merit protection.

A warren is an area of land set aside for the breeding and management of rabbits or hares in order to provide a constant supply of fresh meat and skins. Although the hare is an indigenous species, the tradition of warren construction and use dates from the 12th century, following the introduction of rabbits into England from the continent. Warrens usually contain a number of purpose-built breeding places known as pillow mounds, which were intended to centralise the colony and make catching the animals easier. The mounds vary in design although rarely exceeding 0.7m in height. Although relatively common, warrens are important for their associations with other classes of monument, including various forms of settlement, deer parks, field systems and fishponds and may also provide evidence of the economy of both secular and ecclesiastical estates. All well preserved medieval examples are considered worthy of protection. A sample of well-preserved sites of later date will also merit protection.

The field system and pillow mounds within Ravenstonedale Park are reasonably well-preserved with the majority of the remains preserved as earthworks. The monument lies within Ravenstonedale Park, a 16th century deer park. Taken together the remains provide insight into the changing character of land use from the Iron Age to the post-medieval period with a number of key themes such as subsistence and land enclosure being of clear importance throughout.

Source: Historic England


PastScape Monument No:- 14707 (field system), 14710 (pillow mounds)

Source: Historic England

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