Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Ridlees round cairn, 640m north east of Hanging Crag

A Scheduled Monument in Rochester, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.3326 / 55°19'57"N

Longitude: -2.2496 / 2°14'58"W

OS Eastings: 384262.14262

OS Northings: 604308.442605

OS Grid: NT842043

Mapcode National: GBR D6QS.R7

Mapcode Global: WHB0K.D7Z9

Entry Name: Ridlees round cairn, 640m north east of Hanging Crag

Scheduled Date: 2 June 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008433

English Heritage Legacy ID: 25052

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Rochester

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Horsley with Byrness

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes the remains of a substantial round cairn of prehistoric
date situated on the eastern summit of Hindsike Hill. The cairn, composed of
stone and earth measures 15m in diameter and stands to a maximum height of
1.3m. There are traces of a stone kerb surrounding the cairn.

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

Round cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age
(c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as stone mounds covering single or
multiple burials. These burials may be placed within the mound in stone-lined
compartments called cists. In some cases the cairn was surrounded by a ditch.
Often occupying prominent locations, cairns are a major visual element in the
modern landscape. They are a relatively common feature of the uplands and are
the stone equivalent of the earthen round barrows of the lowlands. Their
considerable variation in form and longevity as a monument type provide
important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation
amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of
their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered
worthy of protection.

The round cairn north east of Hanging Crag is very well preserved and contains
significant archaeological deposits. Evidence of the manner of construction,
and the nature and duration of its use will be preserved within and beneath
the mound.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Charlton, D B, Day, J C, An Archaeological Survey of the MOD Training Area, Otterburn, (1977)

Source: Historic England

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