Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Cairnfield partly enclosed by a bank, on the east side of Woodclose Gill, Scale Knoll Allotment, Barningham Moor, 550m south of Hurst Hill

A Scheduled Monument in Hope, County Durham

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Latitude: 54.4765 / 54°28'35"N

Longitude: -1.9263 / 1°55'34"W

OS Eastings: 404869.925739

OS Northings: 509012.920502

OS Grid: NZ048090

Mapcode National: GBR GJZP.R2

Mapcode Global: WHB4S.CRX4

Entry Name: Cairnfield partly enclosed by a bank, on the east side of Woodclose Gill, Scale Knoll Allotment, Barningham Moor, 550m south of Hurst Hill

Scheduled Date: 24 October 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1017435

English Heritage Legacy ID: 30473

County: County Durham

Civil Parish: Hope

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): County Durham

Church of England Parish: Barningham St Michael and All Angels

Church of England Diocese: Leeds


The monument includes a cairnfield composed of between five and eight small
cairns and an enclosing bank. It is on Barningham Moor, in the modern sheep-
grazing enclosure known as Scale Knoll Allotment. The cairnfield occupies a
level area south of the road from Barningham to East Hope, just east of
Woodclose Gill. The cairnfield covers an area 80m by 73m and is enclosed on
its southern and western sides by a slight bank, which incorporates two of the
The cairns are predominantly between 4m and 5m in diameter and 0.4m high.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Cairnfields are concentrations of cairns sited in close proximity to one
another. They often consist largely of clearance cairns, built with stone
cleared from the surrounding landsurface to improve its use for agriculture,
and on occasion their distribution pattern can be seen to define field plots.
However, funerary cairns are also frequently incorporated, although without
excavation it may be impossible to determine which cairns contain burials.
Clearance cairns were constructed from the Neolithic period (from c.3400 BC),
although the majority of examples appear to be the result of field clearance
which began during the earlier Bronze Age and continued into the later Bronze
Age (2000-700 BC). The considerable longevity and variation in the size,
content and associations of cairnfields provide important information on the
development of land use and agricultural practices. Cairnfields also retain
information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation during the
prehistoric period.

This cairnfield survives well, and with its enclosing bank, forms an important
part of the prehistoric landscape of Barningham Moor, which includes numerous
other cairns, carved rocks and evidence for prehistoric burials, settlements
and the agricultural use of the land. This site will therefore contribute to
studies of such prehistoric landscapes and the changing patterns of land use
over time.

Source: Historic England

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