Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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

Section of the Scots Dyke linear boundary 250m south east of St Martin's Priory

A Scheduled Monument in St. Martin's, North Yorkshire

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: 54.4005 / 54°24'1"N

Longitude: -1.7248 / 1°43'29"W

OS Eastings: 417960.171132

OS Northings: 500592.020069

OS Grid: NZ179005

Mapcode National: GBR JKDK.C9

Mapcode Global: WHC6D.GNWC

Entry Name: Section of the Scots Dyke linear boundary 250m south east of St Martin's Priory

Scheduled Date: 31 January 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015516

English Heritage Legacy ID: 28299

County: North Yorkshire

Civil Parish: St. Martin's

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Richmond with Holy Trinity with Hudswell

Church of England Diocese: Leeds


The monument includes a section of the linear earthwork known as Scots Dyke
which extends from the River Tees to south of the River Swale. This section,
250m south east of St Martin's Priory, consists of a bank and flanking ditch
extending for a total of 40m west from the disused railway to the A6136
road, and is located on the north facing slope extending down to the River
The dyke comprises an earthen bank up to 1.5m high and 10m wide with the ditch
lying to the south. The ditch has been partly infilled and, where it survives
as an earthwork, it is 3m wide and 0.5m deep.
The dyke is truncated at the west end by the road and modern housing although
it continues again in the fields to the south. To the east the dyke is
truncated by the railway although it continues again 250m to the north east
where it is scheduled as a separate monument.

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

Scots Dyke is a linear earthwork extending for 14km from the River Tees to
south of the River Swale in North Yorkshire. Significant sections remain
visible as upstanding earthworks and indicate that the dyke system had an
earthen rampart flanked on the eastern side by a ditch. Where not preserved
as an upstanding monument, the dyke is visible as a cropmark on aerial
photographs and elsewhere often survives as a low bank beneath present field
boundaries. It was constructed in the post Roman period and encloses an area
in the eastern foothills of the Pennines between the two rivers. This area
contained wealthy arable and pastoral land as well as some of the mineral
resources of the northern Pennines. Linear earthworks were used to divide
territory for military, economic and political purposes, often using natural
features such as rivers and watersheds to define an area. Scots Dyke was built
to consolidate territorial and economic units in response to changing
political circumstances during the sixth and seventh centuries AD. These
changes were brought about, at least in part, by the arrival of the Anglians
in northern England. Fewer than 50 examples of linear earthwork boundaries of
post Roman date have been identified in England. As a rare monument type of
considerable importance to the study of early medieval territorial patterns,
all surviving examples are identified as being of national importance.
This section of Scots Dyke survives well and will retain significant
archaeological remains which will contain important information about the
development of the landscape in the post Roman period.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
RCHME, , Scots Dyke, (1986)
Maclaughlan, , 'Archaeological Journal' in Roman Roads Camps and Earthworks in the North Riding, , Vol. VOL 6, (1849), 221-225

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.