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Section of double linear boundary dyke 300m north east of Millington Grange Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Bishop Wilton, East Riding of Yorkshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.9854 / 53°59'7"N

Longitude: -0.7277 / 0°43'39"W

OS Eastings: 483523.984353

OS Northings: 455124.081697

OS Grid: SE835551

Mapcode National: GBR RQCC.72

Mapcode Global: WHFC8.S3N1

Entry Name: Section of double linear boundary dyke 300m north east of Millington Grange Farm

Scheduled Date: 17 December 1929

Last Amended: 18 April 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015573

English Heritage Legacy ID: 26589

County: East Riding of Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Bishop Wilton

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): East Riding of Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Millington St Margaret

Church of England Diocese: York

Details

The monument includes a 290m section of Bronze Age double linear boundary
banks and ditches (also known as a dyke) running north east-south west through
a wooded valley north of Millington Grange, leading north to the junction of
Scoar Dale and towards Millington Wold and Far Out Field.
Lying close to an ancient trackway on the western side of the Wolds, the
surviving part of which forms the present-day Wolds Way, the monument forms a
relatively short section of an elaborate complex of boundary dykes between
Millington and Huggate Wolds and Huggate Pasture, single components of which
run either along the top of the escarpment, or part the way down the sides of
the intervening dry valley systems of Frendal Dale and Tun Dale, south in the
direction of Pasture Dale, Millington Dale and Cow Moor, or north and west
towards Millington Wold and Millington Lings, linking up with the boundary
dykes in those areas. These dykes were used to enhance the natural
topographical barriers of spurs and escarpments between valleys, with
additional physical barriers of banks and ditches. Natural conduits along the
floors of dry valleys were then `blocked' by other bank and ditch systems to
control access.
Well preserved sections of these linear boundaries are the subject of separate
schedulings, and in some cases, adjacent monuments may physically abut.
This elaborate complex of boundary earthworks is one of the best preserved
remnants of the original more extensive systems recorded and mapped by early
antiquarians such as J R Mortimer in the 19th century.
Excavations and observation of spatial relationships with other earthworks of
known date demonstrate this Wolds complex of earthworks to have originated in
the later Bronze Age, with several subsequent phases of elaboration and
augmentation.
The monument also forms part of a broadly related and extensive complex of
multi-period prehistoric earthworks, including bowl barrows, barrow
cemeteries, linear bank and ditch systems, trackways and enclosures dispersed
across Huggate and Warter Wolds, and Huggate and Millington Pastures.
This short section of linear bank and ditch is not a discrete monument, but is
thought to have once formed of part of a continuous length of boundary banks
and ditches with other monuments in this area.
At its southern end, which is not thought to be an original terminal, the
monument includes a short section of single bank and ditch running ENE at the
entrance of a shallow wooded valley. The bank here is around 1.25m high and
about 6m wide at its base, and the shallow, nearly infilled ditch lies to the
north western side of the bank, and is around 2m wide. From about 50m to the
east the line of the monument is better preserved with the bank rising to
between 1.5m and 1.75m in height, with a pronounced `U' shaped ditch 2m wide
at its base, making an overall height of up to 2.5m from the base of the ditch
to the top of the bank. The monument then becomes a double bank with a single
intervening ditch, and then a double bank with double intervening ditches for
a short distance, still keeping the same ENE direction through woodland, with
a footpath lying along its northern edge.
Where it is best preserved, towards its central part, the first bank of the
monument, to the east, is between 2m and 2.5m high, 2m wide at its top and 8m
at its bottom. The first ditch, flanking it to the west, is `U' shaped, being
about 2m wide at the bottom and 6m wide at the top. The second bank is
somewhat lower than the first, being about 1.5m in height, 2m across the top
and 6m along the base, and the second ditch flanking the second bank along its
northerly side is shallow, `U' shaped and 2m wide. The whole dyke system here
is up to 40m wide from one side to the other. As the monument heads east
through woodland in the direction of Scoar Dale and a field boundary to the
east, the double bank and double ditch system merges to become a single bank
and ditch once more and then rapidly dwindles and disappears into fields west
of Scoar Dale. This end is not thought to be an original terminus, but to have
once joined the dyke section further along the valley to the north, which is
the subject of a separate scheduling.
Modern post and wire fences and constructions associated with a radio mast,
including the mast itself, are excluded from the scheduling, although the
ground beneath them is included.

MAP EXTRACT
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

Linear boundaries are substantial earthwork features comprising single or
multiple ditches and banks which may extend over distances varying between
less than 1km to over 10km. They survive as earthworks or as linear features
visible as cropmarks on aerial photographs or as a combination of both. The
evidence of excavation and study of associated monuments demonstrate that
their construction spans the millennium from the Middle Bronze Age, although
they may have been re-used later.
The scale of many linear boundaries has been taken to indicate that they were
constructed by large social groups and were used to mark important boundaries
in the landscape; their impressive scale displaying the corporate prestige of
their builders. They would have been powerful symbols, often with religious
associations, used to define and order the territorial holdings of those
groups who constructed them. Linear earthworks are of considerable importance
for the analysis of settlement and land use in the Bronze Age; all well
preserved examples will normally merit statutory protection.

The monument is part of a very extensive and important system of linear
boundary dykes in this area of the Yorkshire Wolds, dating back to the Bronze
Age. It survives well for most of its length, and is a rare example of a
double complex of banks and ditches. It is closely associated with other
adjacent complexes of linear banks and ditches, which together form an
integral system of boundary and defensive earthworks in this region. As such
it offers important insights into ancient land use and territorial divisions
for social, ritual and agricultural purposes in this area of the Yorkshire
Wolds.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Books and journals
Mortimer, J R , Forty Years Researches in British and Saxon Burial Mounds of East Yorkshire, (1905), 365-380
Dent, J, 'Archaeological Journal' in The Yorkshire Dykes, , Vol. 141, (1984), 32-33
Halkon, P, 'Prehistory Research Section Bulletin' in The Huggate Dykes, , Vol. 30, (1993), 10
Manby, T, 'Current Archaeology' in The Yorkshire Dykes, , Vol. 67, (1979), 233
Other
Humberside SMR, Sites and Monuments Records Sheet, (1994)

Source: Historic England

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