Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Rock with complex carving south west of a wall junction, 265m SSW of Far High Westcliff

A Scheduled Monument in Bewerley, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 54.0681 / 54°4'5"N

Longitude: -1.7562 / 1°45'22"W

OS Eastings: 416052.755279

OS Northings: 463602.185474

OS Grid: SE160636

Mapcode National: GBR JP5D.LG

Mapcode Global: WHC84.000M

Entry Name: Rock with complex carving south west of a wall junction, 265m SSW of Far High Westcliff

Scheduled Date: 18 September 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014969

English Heritage Legacy ID: 28099

County: North Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Bewerley

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire


The monument includes a carved, subrectangular, gritstone rock, protruding
from a slope and largely covered by bracken roots. The visible part measures
1.7m x 1.7m x 0.7m. It is situated in woodland on Nought Bank, at the north
edge of a slightly more level area, south west of a wall junction, at the
south east edge of the wood. An accurate National Grid Reference is SE 16052
The carving consists of a complex design of at least 20 cups, one of which has
a partial ring, and at least seven long grooves. Only part of the rock is
visible, as the south end is deeply embedded in the ground.

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

Prehistoric rock art is found on natural rock outcrops in many areas of upland
Britain. It is especially common in the north of England in Northumberland,
Durham and North and West Yorkshire. The most common form of decoration is the
`cup and ring' marking where expanses of small cup-like hollows are pecked
into the surface of the rock. These cups may be surrounded by one or more
`rings'. Single pecked lines extending from the cup through the `rings' may
also exist, providing the design with a `tail'. Pecked lines or grooves can
also exist in isolation from cup and ring decoration. Other shapes and
patterns also occur, but are less frequent. Carvings may occur singly, in
small groups, or may cover extensive areas of rock surface. They date to the
Late Neolithic and Bronze Age periods (2800-c.500 BC) and provide one of our
most important insights into prehistoric `art'. The exact meaning of the
designs remains unknown, but they may be interpreted as sacred or religious
Frequently they are found close to contemporary burial monuments and the
symbols are also found on portable stones placed directly next to burials or
incorporated in burial mounds. Around 800 examples of prehistoric rock-art
have been recorded in England. This is unlikely to be a realistic reflection
of the number carved in prehistory. Many will have been overgrown or destroyed
in activities such as quarrying. All positively identified prehistoric rock
art sites exhibiting a significant group of designs will normally be
identified as nationally important.

The carving on this rock survives well and it is one of a number of carved
rocks south of the River Nidd between Bewerley and Glasshouses.

Source: Historic England

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