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Ewe Locks Romano-British settlement, Romano-British farmstead and two medieval shielings

A Scheduled Monument in Crosby Ravensworth, Cumbria

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Latitude: 54.5085 / 54°30'30"N

Longitude: -2.6021 / 2°36'7"W

OS Eastings: 361113.519308

OS Northings: 512742.8546

OS Grid: NY611127

Mapcode National: GBR BJ89.GL

Mapcode Global: WH934.0Y63

Entry Name: Ewe Locks Romano-British settlement, Romano-British farmstead and two medieval shielings

Scheduled Date: 27 October 1938

Last Amended: 2 February 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007590

English Heritage Legacy ID: 22477

County: Cumbria

Civil Parish: Crosby Ravensworth

Traditional County: Westmorland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Crosby Ravensworth St Lawrence

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


The monument includes a Romano-British settlement, a Romano-British farmstead,
and two medieval shielings located on virtually level ground north of Blea
Beck. The settlement and farmstead belong to a group of such sites
surrounding the head of the Lyvennet valley. The Romano-British settlement
includes an oval-shaped stone-walled enclosure containing two hut circles at
its south-east side that open on to a yard. The remainder of the oval
enclosure is sub-divided into three fields with the main entrance in the
north-easterly field. Adjoining the
south-western side of the oval enclosure is a rectangular enclosure measuring
c.48m by 44m that has an entrance on the eastern side and contains two stock
pens at its north-east corner together with faint traces of two circular huts
towards the centre. Sixty metres south of the enclosure is a Romano-British
farmstead that includes one hut circle and three small sub-rectangular fields.
There are traces of a stone wall running south from the rectangular enclosure
of the settlement, passing immediately to the west of the farmstead, and
continuing in a southerly direction for a short distance. Later occupation at
the site is attested by the existence of two medieval shielings, each
measuring about 6.1m by 4.5m internally, with walls made of boulders in a
double line standing on edge. They are located within the Romano-British
settlement at the north-east corner of the rectangular enclosure and adjacent
to the southern wall of the oval enclosure.
The Romano-British settlement and farmstead would have been in use during the
Roman occupation of the north. They lie within an area occupied by the
Carvetii tribe.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

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 monument is a good example of a small Romano-British native settlement and
farmstead in close proximity. The earthworks survive well and preserve
considerable detail of the layout of the site. It is one of a group of similar
sites at the head of the Lyvennet valley and will contribute to the study of
Romano-British settlement patterns in the area.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Higham, N, Jones, B, The Carvetti, (1985), 132-3
Alcock, L, 'Archaeologia Cambrensis' in Gwyr Y Gogledd, , Vol. CXXXII, (1983), 4
Collingwood, R G, 'Trans Cumb & West Antiq & Arch Soc. New Ser.' in Prehistoric Settlements in Crosby Ravensworth, (1933), 209
Collingwood, R G, 'Trans Cumb & West Antiq & Arch Soc. New Ser.' in Prehistoric Settlements in Crosby Ravensworth, (1933), 207-9
RCHME, Westmorland, (1936)
Schofield,A.J., MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Shielings, (1989)
Schofield,A.J., MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Shielings, (1989)

Source: Historic England

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