Ancient Monuments

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Section of linear boundary dyke on Millington Lings 625m north east of High Callis Wold

A Scheduled Monument in Millington, East Riding of Yorkshire

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Latitude: 53.9958 / 53°59'44"N

Longitude: -0.7256 / 0°43'32"W

OS Eastings: 483640.73885

OS Northings: 456275.170084

OS Grid: SE836562

Mapcode National: GBR RQC7.PD

Mapcode Global: WHFC2.TTNN

Entry Name: Section of linear boundary dyke on Millington Lings 625m north east of High Callis Wold

Scheduled Date: 17 December 1929

Last Amended: 18 April 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015574

English Heritage Legacy ID: 26590

County: East Riding of Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Millington

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): East Riding of Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Millington St Margaret

Church of England Diocese: York


The monument includes a 350m long section of Bronze Age linear boundary bank
and ditches (also known as a dyke) running due north-south between Millington
Lings and Millington Wold, cut at its southern end by the line of the modern
road running from the A166 south towards Low Callis Wold and Millington
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
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 ditches is not a discrete monument, as
neither its northern nor southern ends are thought to be original termini. It
is thought to have formed part of a continuous length of boundary banks and
ditches with other monuments in this area. At its southern end the dyke
adjoined (or turned to become) a dyke running south west along the line of the
modern road. This section of linear boundary is now no longer clearly
identifiable and is thus not included in the scheduling.
At its northern end, the monument is no longer visible as an earthwork feature
above ground, but its archaeological remains will be preserved in the buried
ditches below the present day ground level. As the line of the monument
progresses due south, it becomes better preserved and survives as a
substantial earthwork feature above ground.
The monument includes a large central bank with double ditches, one flanking
each of its eastern and western sides.
At its southern end, before the monument is cut by the line of the modern
road, the bank is very broad, being up to 9m across at its base and 3m-4m wide
at the top, and is around 1.5m high on average.
The western ditch is `U' shaped and 1.5m deep, measuring around 1.25m wide at
its base and 4m wide at its top. The ditch to the east has a more `V' shaped
profile, being around a metre wide at its base and up to 4m wide at the top.
Towards the centre of the monument, the bank changes shape slightly, becoming
more smoothly rounded in profile. It is broken in places by gaps thought to be
of a later period, and the ditches become partly infilled towards the centre
of the monument.
Modern post and wire fences are excluded from the scheduling, although the
ground beneath them 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

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. Although the monument does not survive above ground level at its northern
end, archaeological remains will survive in the buried ditches below ground
here. However, for most of its length it survives well as a significant
earthwork feature, and is a rare example of a complex of bank and double
flanking 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


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
Humberside SMR, Sites and Monuments Records Sheet, (1994)

Source: Historic England

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