Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Section of linear earthwork on Seamer Moor Hill

A Scheduled Monument in Woodlands, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 54.2657 / 54°15'56"N

Longitude: -0.4412 / 0°26'28"W

OS Eastings: 501624.168912

OS Northings: 486678.711331

OS Grid: TA016866

Mapcode National: GBR TMC3.8M

Mapcode Global: WHGC6.615P

Entry Name: Section of linear earthwork on Seamer Moor Hill

Scheduled Date: 5 August 1933

Last Amended: 9 August 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008135

English Heritage Legacy ID: 23835

County: North Yorkshire

Electoral Ward/Division: Woodlands

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Scarborough St Luke

Church of England Diocese: York


The monument includes a section of linear earthwork, a member of a wider group
of similar monuments in this area of the North Yorkshire moors. The monument
comprises a central earthen bank up to 1.5m high and 10m wide flanked by
ditches up to 1m deep and 7m wide. These ditches are flanked by external
earthen banks 0.3m high and 5m wide. The best preserved section of this
earthwork is situated in the woods immediately to the south of the boundary
with the wireless station. An unmetalled track crosses the earthwork in the

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

Cross dykes are substantial linear earthworks typically between 0.2km and 1km
long and comprising one or more ditches arranged beside and parallel to one or
more banks. They generally occur in upland situations, running across ridges
and spurs. They are recognised as earthworks or as cropmarks on aerial
photographs, or as combinations of both. The evidence of excavation and
analogy with associated monuments demonstrates that their construction spans
the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although they may have been re-used
later. Current information favours the view that they were used as territorial
boundary markers, probably demarcating land allotment within communities,
although they may also have been used as trackways, cattle droveways or
defensive earthworks. Cross dykes are one of the few monument types which
illustrate how land was divided up in the prehistoric period. They are of
considerable importance for any analysis of settlement and land use in the
Bronze Age. Very few have survived to the present day and hence all well-
preserved examples are considered to be of national importance.

This linear earthwork survives reasonably well. Although affected by
landscaping at the wireless station, the course of a track and tree-planting,
the monument remains visible as an earthwork feature. Together with other
cross dykes in the immediate vicinity it will contribute to an understanding
of prehistoric land division in the area.

Source: Historic England


9160, North Yorkshire SMR,

Source: Historic England

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