Ancient Monuments

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Yarborough Camp large univallate hillfort

A Scheduled Monument in Melton Ross, North Lincolnshire

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Latitude: 53.5936 / 53°35'37"N

Longitude: -0.368 / 0°22'4"W

OS Eastings: 508108.21539

OS Northings: 412020.50012

OS Grid: TA081120

Mapcode National: GBR TVWW.3J

Mapcode Global: WHGGB.9XZY

Entry Name: Yarborough Camp large univallate hillfort

Scheduled Date: 20 February 1962

Last Amended: 16 April 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016427

English Heritage Legacy ID: 32623

County: North Lincolnshire

Civil Parish: Melton Ross

Traditional County: Lincolnshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Lincolnshire

Church of England Parish: Croxton St John

Church of England Diocese: Lincoln


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of a hillfort defended
by a substantial single bank and ditch. It is sited on a slight hillspur on
the northern side of the Kirmington Gap, just over 1km WSW of Croxton.
Yarborough Camp was interpreted by antiquarians as a Roman fortification and
in 1776 Stukeley recorded that a large number of Roman coins, many of the
early 4th century Emperor Licinius, were found there. In 1952 it was reported
that there had been surface finds of a small quantity of pottery, interpreted
as Romano-British, and a few flint scrapers inside the camp. The monument is
sited on the line of a prehistoric trackway which was later modified and
improved by the Romans. Known as High Street, this track ran mainly along the
dip slope of the Wolds from Horncastle in the south to the Humber. The
monument also overlooks the Iron Age and Romano-British settlement of
Kirmington which lies 1.7km to the south east.
Yarborough Camp is sited on a slight break of slope on a south east facing
hillside. It is nearly square in plan, being 80m east-west and 60m north-south
internally, and formed by a substantial earthen and chalk bank with a mainly
infilled ditch approximately 10m wide immediately around the outside. The
eastern rampart is slightly bowed outwards, the other three sides being
straight. The northern rampart diverges slightly from the southern rampart so
that the interior measures approximately 55m north-south on its western side
and 65m on its eastern side. The banks are rounded in profile and typically
spread to 10m wide, standing 1m to 1.5m high. The corners, however, are more
substantial, standing to at least 2m, the south eastern corner to over 3m high
externally. The ground surface on this south eastern side of the hillfort is
lower than around the rest of the circuit. However, the interior of the
hillfort is level, and appears to have been built up on the southern eastern
side to at least 1m. The central portion of the eastern rampart is slightly
flattened and has been identified as the entrance to the hillfort. The surface
of the trackway that runs along part of the mainly infilled ditch on the
outside of the southern ramparts is excluded from the scheduling, although the
ground beneath 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

Large multivallate hillforts are defined as fortified enclosures of between
5ha and 85ha in area, located on hills and defined by two or more lines of
concentric earthworks set at intervals of up to 15m. They date to the Iron
Age period, most having been constructed and used between the sixth century BC
and the mid-first century AD. They are generally regarded as centres of
permanent occupation, defended in response to increasing warfare, a reflection
of the power struggle between competing elites.
Earthworks usually consist of a rampart and ditch, although some only have
ramparts. Access to the interior is generally provided by two entrances
although examples with one and more than two have been noted. These may
comprise a single gap in the rampart, inturned or offset ramparts,
oblique approaches, guardrooms or outworks. Internal features generally
include evidence for intensive occupation, often in the form of oval or
circular houses. These display variations in size and are often clustered,
for example, along streets. Four- and six-post structures, interpreted as
raised granaries, also occur widely while a few sites appear to contain
evidence for temples. Other features associated with settlement include
platforms, paved areas, pits, gullies, fencelines, hearths and ovens.
Additional evidence, in the form of artefacts, suggests that industrial
activity such as bronze- and iron-working as well as pottery manufacture
occurred on many sites.
Large multivallate hillforts are rare with around 50 examples recorded
nationally. These occur mostly in two concentrations, in Wessex and the Welsh
Marches, although scattered examples occur elsewhere.
In view of the rarity of large multivallate hillforts and their importance in
understanding the nature of social organisation within the Iron Age period,
all examples with surviving archaeological potential are believed to be of
national importance.

Yarborough Camp is one of a small number of monuments which have been
identified as Iron Age hillforts on the Lincolnshire Wolds. It is a well
preserved earthwork site which will retain significant archaeological deposits
within the interior of the camp and in the ramparts and infilled surrounding
ditch. The finds of Romano-British period material in the hillfort add to the
monument's importance as it suggests that it was later re-used or continued in
use into at least the 4th century AD.

Source: Historic England


Record Card, North Lincolnshire SMR, 743,

Source: Historic England

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