Ancient Monuments

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Section of the Cleave Dyke system 200m south east of Yorkshire Gliding Club

A Scheduled Monument in Kilburn High and Low, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 54.2278 / 54°13'39"N

Longitude: -1.2046 / 1°12'16"W

OS Eastings: 451951.217732

OS Northings: 481629.111331

OS Grid: SE519816

Mapcode National: GBR NM1K.07

Mapcode Global: WHD8K.GZMT

Entry Name: Section of the Cleave Dyke system 200m south east of Yorkshire Gliding Club

Scheduled Date: 3 August 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012993

English Heritage Legacy ID: 26934

County: North Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Kilburn High and Low

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire


The monument includes a section of the prehistoric linear boundary system on
the Hambleton Hills, known as the Cleave Dyke.
Orientated east to west this section of earthwork lies in a coniferous
plantation sloping down to a gill. The dyke has a flat topped bank, 1m high,
flanking a broad ditch 6m wide and 0.8m deep lying to the north. The western
end has been cut and destroyed by a quarry and the eastern end terminates at a
later trackway. The course of the dyke beyond the latter point is not yet
This monument is part of a wider system of prehistoric linear earthworks
continuing for 9km north-south along the western edge of the Hambleton Hills.
Shorter east-west earthworks linked valley heads to the main dyke and thus
divided the terrain into discrete units for agricultural and social purposes.
The dyke is associated with earlier round barrows which also marked the
division of land. Together the monuments on this area of the Hambleton Hills
provide important evidence of territorial organisation and the development of
settled agricultural practices.

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

The Cleave Dyke system is the most westerly of a series of dyke systems on the
Tabular Hills of north east Yorkshire. The name has been given to a series of
linear ditches and banks stretching north-south over 9km parallel with and
close to the western scarp of the Hambleton Hills. The system was constructed
between the Late Bronze Age and the Iron Age to augment the natural division
of the terrain by river valleys and watersheds. Significant stretches remain
visible as upstanding earthworks; elsewhere it can be recognised as a cropmark
on aerial photographs. The system formed a prehistoric territorial boundary in
an area largely given over to pastoralism; the impressive scale of the
earthworks displays the corporate prestige of their builders. In some
instances the boundaries have remained in use to the present day. Linear
boundaries are of considerable importance for the analysis of settlement and
land use in the later prehistoric period; all well preserved examples will
normally merit statutory protection.

This section of the Cleave Dyke system is preserved as a prominent earthwork,
forming a clear division across the landscape. Significant remains are
preserved which will retain important information about the original form and
function of the earthwork. This dyke forms a smaller landscape division at
right angles to the main spine of the Cleave Dyke. The monument offers
important scope for the study of the division of land for social, ritual and
agricultural purposes in different geographical areas during the prehistoric

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Spratt, D A, 'The Yorkshire Archaeologial Journal' in The Cleave Dyke System, , Vol. VOL 54, (), 33-56

Source: Historic England

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