Ancient Monuments

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Romano-British farmstead, 70m south-west of Pity Me

A Scheduled Monument in Chollerton, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.0845 / 55°5'4"N

Longitude: -2.1302 / 2°7'48"W

OS Eastings: 391786.321798

OS Northings: 576674.854685

OS Grid: NY917766

Mapcode National: GBR F9KN.M5

Mapcode Global: WHB1S.7GWJ

Entry Name: Romano-British farmstead, 70m south-west of Pity Me

Scheduled Date: 9 August 1954

Last Amended: 17 February 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011424

English Heritage Legacy ID: 20929

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Chollerton

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Chollerton St Giles

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes a farmstead of Romano-British date situated on the top
of Camphill adjacent to a disused quarry. The former quarry has removed the
south-eastern end of the enclosure. The settlement is sub-rectangular in shape
and measures a maximum of 62m north-west to south-east by 77m north-east to
south-west within a single bank and a ditch. The surrounding ditch is well
preserved and measures 6m wide and 1.3m deep. Outside the ditch there is a
bank 3.5m across. The bank and ditch are best preserved on the north and
western sides. The original entrance probably lay in the south-eastern side
and has been destroyed. There are no visible traces of internal occupation but
the foundations of circular houses will survive beneath the ground surface.
The track which crosses the site and the fence around the quarry edge are
excluded from the scheduling but the ground beneath them is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

In Cumbria and Northumberland several distinctive types of native settlements
dating to the Roman period have been identified. The majority were small, non-
defensive, enclosed homesteads or farms. In many areas they were of stone
construction, although in the coastal lowlands timber-built variants were also
common. In much of Northumberland, especially in the Cheviots, the enclosures
were curvilinear in form. Further south a rectangular form was more common.
Elsewhere, especially near the Scottish border, another type occurs where the
settlement enclosure was `scooped' into the hillslope. Frequently the
enclosures reveal a regularity and similarity of internal layout. The standard
layout included one or more stone round-houses situated towards the rear of
the enclosure, facing the single entranceway. In front of the houses were
pathways and small enclosed yards. Homesteads normally had only one or two
houses, but larger enclosures could contain as many as six. At some sites the
settlement appears to have grown, often with houses spilling out of the main
enclosure and clustered around it. At these sites up to 30 houses may be
found. In the Cumbrian uplands the settlements were of less regimented form
and unenclosed clusters of houses of broadly contemporary date are also known.
These homesteads were being constructed and used by non-Roman natives
throughout the period of the Roman occupation. Their origins lie in settlement
forms developed before the arrival of the Romans. These homesteads are common
throughout the uplands where they frequently survive as well-preserved
earthworks. In lowland coastal areas they were also originally common,
although there they can frequently only be located through aerial photography.
All homestead sites which survive substantially intact will normally be
identified as nationally important.

Despite some damage by quarrying, the farmstead at Pity Me is well preserved
and retains significant archaeological remains. Additionally, it is one of a
group of similar settlements in this area and will contribute to the study of
the wider settlement pattern of the area at this time.

Source: Historic England


Ordnance Survey, NY 97 NW 14 Ordnance Survey Illustration Card, (1962)

Source: Historic England

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