Ancient Monuments

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Roman camp 200m west of Galleygill Bridge

A Scheduled Monument in Hesket, Cumbria

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Latitude: 54.7425 / 54°44'32"N

Longitude: -2.7924 / 2°47'32"W

OS Eastings: 349082.82707

OS Northings: 538900.328053

OS Grid: NY490389

Mapcode National: GBR 8FYL.7R

Mapcode Global: WH80Y.22K5

Entry Name: Roman camp 200m west of Galleygill Bridge

Scheduled Date: 15 November 1961

Last Amended: 7 February 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007869

English Heritage Legacy ID: 23667

County: Cumbria

Civil Parish: Hesket

Traditional County: Cumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Plumpton Wall St John the Evangelist

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


The monument is a Roman camp located on the edge of high ground overlooking
the River Petteril to the west. It lies 400m north west of Old Penrith Roman
fort (known to the Romans as Voreda) and a short distance west of the A6 trunk
road which here follows the line of the Roman road that connected Old Penrith
with the fort at Carlisle (known to the Romans as Luguvallium). Parts of the
camp are visible as cropmarks on aerial photographs which highlight features
such as infilled ditches. Aerial photographs show much of the north west and
north east sides of the camp and its rounded northern corner, and indicate
that it is between 90m - 100m wide. Limited excavation across the defences of
the north east side of the camp in 1977 found a V-shaped outer ditch 2.6m wide
and approximately 1m deep. The bottom of the ditch contained large cobbles
laid in silt; immediately above these were four pottery sherds of
black-burnished ware which is only found in northern England from about AD 120
All post and wire fences, gateposts and a telegraph pole are excluded from the
scheduling, although the ground beneath these features is included.

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

Roman camps are rectangular or sub-rectangular enclosures which were
constructed and used by Roman soldiers either when out on campaign or as
practice camps; most campaign camps were only temporary overnight bases and
few were used for longer periods. They were bounded by a single earthen
rampart and outer ditch and in plan are always straight-sided with rounded
corners. Normally they have between one and four entrances, although as many
as eleven have been recorded. Such entrances were usually centrally placed in
the sides of the camp and were often protected by additional defensive
outworks. Roman camps are found throughout much of England, although most
known examples lie in the midlands and north. Around 140 examples have been
identified and, as one of the various types of defensive enclosure built by
the Roman Army, particularly in hostile upland and frontier areas, they
provide an important insight into Roman military strategy and organisation.
All well-preserved examples are identified as being of national importance.

The Roman camp 200m west of Galleygill Bridge is one of many lying adjacent to
the main Roman road connecting the Vale of York with Carlisle. Many of these
camps display marked differences in plan, defensive arrangements, numbers of
gateways, size and subsequent troop disposition. Despite the absence of any
upstanding earthworks at this monument, aerial photographs have identified
below ground features which have been confirmed by limited excavation. The
camp will contribute to any study of Roman military campaigning in northern

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Breeze, DJ, The Northern Frontiers of Roman Britain, (1982), 71
Goodburn, R, 'Britannia' in Roman Britain In 1977, , Vol. 9, (1978), 425
St Joseph, J K, 'Journal of Roman Studies' in Air Reconnaissance of North Britain, , Vol. 41, (1951), 54
AP No STJ DM060, Cambridge University Collection,
Petteril Green Roman Camp, (1984)
SMR No. 2921, Cumbria SMR, Roman Camp Near Galley Gill Bridge, (1984)

Source: Historic England

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