Ancient Monuments

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East Witton camp slight univallate hillfort

A Scheduled Monument in East Witton, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 54.2642 / 54°15'51"N

Longitude: -1.8174 / 1°49'2"W

OS Eastings: 411992.676939

OS Northings: 485404.808619

OS Grid: SE119854

Mapcode National: GBR HMR4.B5

Mapcode Global: WHC74.12VV

Entry Name: East Witton camp slight univallate hillfort

Scheduled Date: 2 January 1947

Last Amended: 6 January 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1009321

English Heritage Legacy ID: 24484

County: North Yorkshire

Civil Parish: East Witton

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire


This generally well preserved and strongly fortified univallate hillfort is
situated on a north facing slope on Braithwaite Banks. It is defended on all
sides except the east by a rampart and outer ditch with a slight outer or
counterscarp bank on the north and west sides. The banks are constructed with
a stone core and have two entrances, one at the north west corner and the
other of more modern appearance in the south side. This latter entrance has
been revetted on its west side with large boulders. The east side has been
infilled and widened to take a modern track and has a width of 4.6m.
A sub-rectangular inner enclosure is defined by the ditch and rampart and
situated towards the south east corner of the main work. It encloses an area
measuring approximately 45m square with an entrance on the west side. The
area has, however, been ploughed out at some time and the extent is now barely
discernible. Only in the southern section are rampart and ditch prominent.
Here the rampart is 1.8m high and the ditch 1.3m deep. These fade out on the
north and east sides and only faint traces remain. Some damage has been caused
to the site from quarrying above Red Beck Gill which has encroached upon the
south east corner of the outer rampart. The south west outer rampart is also
slightly mutilated.

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

Slight univallate hillforts are defined as enclosures of various shapes,
generally between 1ha and 10ha in size, situated on or close to hilltops and
defined by a single line of earthworks, the scale of which is relatively
small. They date to between the Late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age (eighth -
fifth centuries BC), the majority being used for 150 to 200 years prior to
their abandonment or reconstruction. Slight univallate hillforts have
generally been interpreted as stock enclosures, redistribution centres, places
of refuge and permanent settlements. The earthworks generally include a
rampart, narrow level berm, external ditch and counterscarp bank, while access
to the interior is usually provided by two entrances comprising either simple
gaps in the earthwork or an inturned rampart. Postholes revealed by excavation
indicate the occasional presence of portal gateways while more elaborate
features like overlapping ramparts and outworks are limited to only a few
examples. Internal features included timber or stone round houses; large
storage pits and hearths; scattered postholes, stakeholes and gullies; and
square or rectangular buildings supported by four to six posts, often
represented by postholes, and interpreted as raised granaries. Slight
univallate hillforts are rare with around 150 examples recorded nationally.
Although on a national scale the number is low, in Devon they comprise one of
the major classes of hillfort. In other areas where the distribution is
relatively dense, for example, Wessex, Sussex, the Cotswolds and the
Chilterns, hillforts belonging to a number of different classes occur within
the same region. Examples are also recorded in eastern England, the Welsh
Marches, central and southern England. In view of the rarity of slight
univallate hillforts and their importance in understanding the transition
between Bronze Age and Iron Age communities, all examples which survive
comparatively well and have potential for the recovery of further
archaeological remains are believed to be of national importance.

Despite limited damage and disturbance caused by quarrying and ploughing, East
Witton camp survives reasonably well.

Source: Historic England

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