Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Stone alignment, 900m south-west of Holystone Grange

A Scheduled Monument in Harbottle, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.295 / 55°17'42"N

Longitude: -2.0686 / 2°4'7"W

OS Eastings: 395739.697776

OS Northings: 600102.214927

OS Grid: NT957001

Mapcode National: GBR F7Z6.YP

Mapcode Global: WHB0V.656L

Entry Name: Stone alignment, 900m south-west of Holystone Grange

Scheduled Date: 26 November 1932

Last Amended: 27 January 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1009448

English Heritage Legacy ID: 20954

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Harbottle

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Upper Coquetdale

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument is a stone alignment, known locally as The Five Kings, situated
on south-east sloping moorland, beneath a craggy outcrop. The alignment
includes four substantial stones situated in a slight arc from south-west to
north-east. The stones are located 4m, 7m and 6m apart and are 2m, 1.3m, 1.6m
and 2.2m high. A fifth stone which completed the alignment was situated 7m
beyond the fourth but was removed earlier this century; the site of this stone
is also included in the scheduling. Local tradition says that the five stones
represent five brothers who owned adjacent areas of land.

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

Stone alignments or stone rows consist of upright stones set in a single line,
or in two or more parallel lines, up to several hundred metres in length. They
are often sited close to prehistoric burial monuments, such as small cairns
and cists, and to ritual monuments, such as stone circles, and are therefore
considered to have had an important ceremonial function. Stone alignments were
being constructed and used from the Late Neolithic period to the Middle Bronze
Age (c.2500-1000 BC) and provide rare evidence of ceremonial and ritual
practices during these periods. Due to their rarity and longevity as a
monument type, all examples that are not extensively damaged will be
considered worthy of protection.

The stone alignment near Holystone Grange is very well preserved and is a fine
example of a prehistoric stone monument. It is the only surviving example in
the county and will contribute to any study of prehistoric settlement and
activity in Northumberland.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Dixon, D D, Upper Coquetdale, (1903), 122-123
Tomlinson, W W, Comprehensive Guide to Northumberland, (1916), 344
NT 90 SE 03,

Source: Historic England

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