Ancient Monuments

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Romano-British farmstead 750m NNE of Quarry House

A Scheduled Monument in Bavington, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.1194 / 55°7'9"N

Longitude: -2.055 / 2°3'18"W

OS Eastings: 396587.301178

OS Northings: 580561.237347

OS Grid: NY965805

Mapcode National: GBR G927.WM

Mapcode Global: WHB1M.DLN7

Entry Name: Romano-British farmstead 750m NNE of Quarry House

Scheduled Date: 1 August 1961

Last Amended: 4 November 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011553

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21029

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Bavington

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Thockrington St Aidan

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes the remains of a farmstead of Romano-British date
situated at the foot of a slope on the west side of the Throckrington Burn
valley. The farmstead, sub-rectangular in shape, measures a maximum of 45m
east-west by 58m north-south within double ramparts and a ditch. The inner
bank is 5m wide and stands to an average height of 1m. Outside the bank there
is a broad ditch 7m wide on the north, south and eastern sides; on the western
side the ditch broadens to 12m and this is thought to represent the site of an
earlier ditched enclosure. The outer bank is 5m wide and stands to a height of
1.5m above the bottom of the ditch. There is an entrance, 6m wide, in the
centre of the eastern side of the enclosure which is carried across the ditch
on a causeway. Within the enclosure there are the stone foundations of at
least three circular houses, on average 7m in diameter, with walls standing to
a height of 0.2m. A fourth hut circle was excavated in 1886 and a single piece
of Roman pottery was discovered. Traces of two sunken yards associated with
the houses are visible at the southern end of the monument. Given the unusual
double banked form of this monument it is possible that more than one phase of
activity is represented by the remains.

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

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.

The farmstead NNE of Quarry House is very well preserved and retains
significant archaeological deposits. It is one of a group of similar
settlements in the area and will contribute to any study of the settlement
pattern at this time.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Jobey, G, A Field Guide to Prehistoric Northumberland part 2, (1974), 36
Hedley, R C, 'Archaeologia Aeliana 2 ser 12' in Archaeologia Aeliana 2 ser 12, (1887), 155-8
Jobey, G, 'Archaeologia Aeliana 4 ser 38' in Rectlinear Settlements of the Roman Period in Northumberland, (1960), 36

Source: Historic England

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