Ancient Monuments

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Rectangular enclosures 95yds (85m) north of Sceughmire

A Scheduled Monument in Orton, Cumbria

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Latitude: 54.8818 / 54°52'54"N

Longitude: -3.0129 / 3°0'46"W

OS Eastings: 335110.959581

OS Northings: 554584.985036

OS Grid: NY351545

Mapcode National: GBR 7CDZ.HT

Mapcode Global: WH801.PKGD

Entry Name: Rectangular enclosures 95yds (85m) N of Sceughmire

Scheduled Date: 22 May 1975

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007254

English Heritage Legacy ID: CU 16

County: Cumbria

Civil Parish: Orton

Traditional County: Cumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Great Orton St Giles

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


Two settlement enclosures, 706m SSE of Tempest Tower.

Source: Historic England


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 23 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 two settlement enclosures of Iron Age/Romano-British date, situated near the crest of a north east-south west running ridge. The first enclosure, which is preserved as a cropmark, is rectilinear measuring approximately 40m by 32m and being surrounded by a 1.5m to 2m wide ditch. The enclosure has an entrance on its east side which is approached by a 4m wide double-ditched trackway, which turns south as it exits the enclosure running parallel with the south edge of the enclosure. A second ditch running along the north edge of the enclosure forms the southern edge of the second rectilinear enclosure, which is preserved as a cropmark and measures 34m by 30m. Analysis of aerial photographs indicates that the second enclosure may represent part of an associated field system.

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.

The two settlement enclosure 706m SSE of Tempest Tower are preserved as cropmarks with the presence of ditches indicating that the monument will contain below ground archaeological deposits relating to its construction use and abandonment and environmental deposits relating to the use of the surrounding landscape. The monument provides insight into the character of settlement and subsistence during the Iron Age/Romano-British period. The significance of the site is increased by its proximity to a broadly contemporary settlement enclosure, which lies 710m to the north west.

Source: Historic England


PastScape Monument No:- 10784

Source: Historic England

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