Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Defended settlement, 700m south east of Glen Aln

A Scheduled Monument in Edlingham, Northumberland

We don't have any photos of this monument yet. Why don't you be the first to send us one?

Upload Photo »

Approximate Location Map
Large Map »

If Google Street View is available, the image is from the best available vantage point looking, if possible, towards the location of the monument. Where it is not available, the satellite view is shown instead.


Latitude: 55.4005 / 55°24'1"N

Longitude: -1.7885 / 1°47'18"W

OS Eastings: 413491.918187

OS Northings: 611862.869111

OS Grid: NU134118

Mapcode National: GBR H5YZ.LW

Mapcode Global: WHC1J.HJK7

Entry Name: Defended settlement, 700m south east of Glen Aln

Scheduled Date: 1 November 1967

Last Amended: 18 June 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014063

English Heritage Legacy ID: 25195

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Edlingham

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Whittingham and Edlingham with Bolton Chapel

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes a defended settlement of Iron Age date situated on a
gentle north facing slope below higher ground to the south. The enclosure,
oval in shape, measures a maximum of 78m north west to south east by 62m north
east to south west within two ramparts of earth and stone separated by a
ditch. The inner rampart, where best preserved at the southern and north
eastern sides, is a maximum of 5m wide and 0.5m high, elsewhere it survives as
a scarp 0.3m high. The surrounding ditch is on average 8m wide and survives to
a maximum depth of 1.2m at the southern end. The outer rampart survives as the
face of a scarp beneath the modern field walls on the north and eastern sides
and as a low bank 4m wide on the southern side. Outside the outer rampart
at the south side there is a second ditch on average 8m wide and 1m deep. On
all other sides this ditch has become infilled but it survives as a buried
feature. A small bronze axe discovered at the monument during the 1880s is now
at the Black Gate Museum, Newcastle. All stone field walls and the stone
building at the south end of the monument are excluded from the scheduling but
the ground beneath these features is included.

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

During the mid-prehistoric period (seventh to fifth centuries BC) a variety of
different types of defensive settlements began to be constructed and occupied
in the northern uplands of England. The most obvious sites were hillforts
built in prominent locations. In addition to these a range of smaller sites,
sometimes with an enclosed area of less than 1ha and defined as defended
settlements, were also constructed. Some of these were located on hilltops,
others are found in less prominent positions. The enclosing defences were of
earthen construction, some sites having a single bank and ditch (univallate),
others having more than one (multivallate). At some sites these earthen
ramparts represent a second phase of defence, the first having been a timber
fence or palisade. Within the enclosure a number of stone or timber-built
round houses were occupied by the inhabitants. Stock may also have been kept
in these houses, especially during the cold winter months, or in enclosed
yards outside them. The communities occupying these sites were probably single
family groups, the defended settlements being used as farmsteads. Construction
and use of this type of site extended over several centuries, possibly through
to the early Romano-British period (mid to late first century AD).
Defended settlements are a rare monument type. They were an important element
of the later prehistoric settlement pattern of the northern uplands and are
important for any study of the developing use of fortified settlements during
this period. All well-preserved examples are believed to be of national

The defended settlement near Glen Aln is reasonably well preserved and retains
significant archaeological deposits. It will add greatly to any study of the
wider prehistoric settlement pattern at this time.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
MacLaughlan, H, Memoir to Survey of Eastern Branch of the Watling Street, (1864), 56
Cowan, J D, 'Proc Soc Antiq Ncle 4 ser 10' in Proc Soc Antiq Ncle 4 ser 10, (1947), 204
Jobey, G, 'Archaeologia Aeliana' in Hill Forts and Settlements in Northumberland, (1965), 64

Source: Historic England

Other nearby scheduled monuments is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact for any queries related to any individual ancient or schedued monument, planning permission related to scheduled monuments or the scheduling process itself. is a Good Stuff website.