Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Prehistoric unenclosed hut circle and field plot at Lamb Crag

A Scheduled Monument in Ilderton, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.4968 / 55°29'48"N

Longitude: -2.0411 / 2°2'28"W

OS Eastings: 397499.425494

OS Northings: 622554.266283

OS Grid: NT974225

Mapcode National: GBR G45W.XD

Mapcode Global: WH9ZW.M37F

Entry Name: Prehistoric unenclosed hut circle and field plot at Lamb Crag

Scheduled Date: 16 January 1998

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016247

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29333

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Ilderton

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Ilderton St Michael

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes the remains of a prehistoric unenclosed settlement,
which comprises one or two hut circles, within an embanked sub-rectangular
field plot at Lamb Crag. It is located on gently sloping ground north east of
Langlee Crags with extensive views to the north east. The monument was
initially observed from the air and is clearly visible on aerial photographs.
On the ground the field plot, approximately 50m by 60m, is traceable as a
fragmentary bank 2m wide which survives up to 0.2m high externally on the
south west side. The interior of the plot is terraced up to 0.5m deep into the
hill slope on this side. The hut circle lies roughly in the centre of the plot
and measures 8m in diameter. A curved fragment of bank to the south may
represent a second hut circle.

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

Unenclosed hut circle settlements were the dwelling places of prehistoric
farmers. The hut circles take a variety of forms. Some are stone based and are
visible as low walls or banks enclosing a circular floor area. Others were
timber constructions and only the shallow groove in which the timber uprights
used in the wall construction stood can now be identified; this may survive as
a slight earthwork feature or may be visible on aerial photographs. Some can
only be identified by the artificial earthwork platforms created as level
stances for the houses. The number of houses in a settlement varies between
one and twelve. In areas where they were constructed on hillslopes the
platforms on which the houses stood are commonly arrayed in tiers along the
contour of the slope. Several settlements have been shown to be associated
with organised field plots, the fields being defined by low stony banks or
indicated by groups of clearance cairns.
Many unenclosed settlements have been shown to date to the Bronze Age but it
is also clear that they were still being constructed and used in the Early
Iron Age. They provide an important contrast to the various types of enclosed
and defended settlements which were also being constructed and used around the
same time. Their longevity of use and their relationship with other monument
types provides important information on the diversity of social organisation
and farming practices amongst prehistoric communities.

The prehistoric unenclosed hut circle and field plot at Lamb Crag survive in
reasonable condition and retain significant archaeological deposits. They lie
in an area of clustered sites whose archaeological remains survive well on and
around Brands Hill and form part of a wider archaeological landscape in the
northern Cheviots. They will contribute to any study of settlement and land
use during this period.

Source: Historic England


NMR, SF 1734/53, 3/3/1980, Gates, T, NT9722B, AP Collection, Museum of Antiquities, Univ of Newcastle, (1980)
NMR, SF 1734/53, 3/3/1980, Gates, T, NT9722B, AP Collection, Museum of Antiquities, Univ of Newcastle, (1980)

Source: Historic England

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