Ancient Monuments

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Roman camp on Huntington South Moor, 300m east of Huntington Grange

A Scheduled Monument in Huntington, York

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Latitude: 53.9846 / 53°59'4"N

Longitude: -1.0546 / 1°3'16"W

OS Eastings: 462092.787978

OS Northings: 454693.132334

OS Grid: SE620546

Mapcode National: GBR PQ2C.HD

Mapcode Global: WHFC3.S30P

Entry Name: Roman camp on Huntington South Moor, 300m east of Huntington Grange

Scheduled Date: 11 August 2003

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1020976

English Heritage Legacy ID: 34718

County: York

Civil Parish: Huntington

Built-Up Area: York

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Huntington All Saints

Church of England Diocese: York


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of the north
western of a pair of Roman camps on Huntington South Moor that were
identified from aerial photographs taken in March 2002. The second camp,
which is orientated in the same way, is centred approximately 250m to the
south east.

The 18th century antiquarians W Stukeley and F Drake noted the earthworks
of seven or eight Roman camps to the north of York. Two of these partly
survive as very low earthworks on Bootham Stray and Clifton Moor, just
over 2km to the west. These are both protected as scheduled monuments. The
location of the other five or six sites mentioned by the antiquarians is
uncertain, but could include the two camps identified in 2002 on
Huntington South Moor. All of these camps lie close to the Roman legionary
fortress of Eboracum, the remains of which lie beneath York city centre.
They have been interpreted as either practice camps constructed by the
Roman army for training purposes, or temporary camps occupied during the
construction of the fortress in the early 70s AD.

Although the camp was not identified until March 2002, RAF photographs
taken in the early 1950s show the full extent of the camp before the
construction of the Ryedale Stadium (which is marked on the 1:10,000 map
as `Rugby League Football Ground'). These photographs show the camp as a
playing card shape, the low bank and outer ditch describing a round
cornered rectangle that is typical of many Roman camps. From these
photographs the camp's long axis can be seen to run north east to south
west, measuring nearly 140m between banks or 150m between the outer
ditches, with its shorter axis measuring just over 95m between banks. The
Ryedale Stadium now overlies the eastern part of the camp. Although there
may still be archaeological remains surviving in the area of the stadium,
their extent is not known and so this area is not included within the
monument. However, the western part of the camp still survives as
upstanding earthworks and is included in the monument. The bank typically
survives up to 0.2m to 0.3m high and 6m to 7m wide with the outer ditch
0.1m to 0.2m deep and typically 6m wide, but up to 10m wide in places. The
area of the monument lies within three former fields orientated east-west,
although the southern two have been amalgamated so that the boundary is
not shown on the 1:10,000 map. All three fields have regularly spaced
ditches just over 4m apart, running parallel with the east-west field
boundaries. These have been interpreted as 19th century drainage works
although they may alternatively relate to post-medieval ploughing. Most of
the earthworks of the camp lie within the middle field, including the
camp's western corner, and it is in this area where they are best
preserved. However, the earthworks are still traceable as upstanding
earthworks in the other two fields.

All fence posts are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground
beneath them is included.

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

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Roman camps are rectangular or sub-rectangular enclosures which were
constructed and used by Roman soldiers either when out on campaign or as
practice camps; most campaign camps were only temporary overnight bases and
few were used for longer periods. They were bounded by a single earthen
rampart and outer ditch and in plan are always straight-sided with rounded
corners. Normally they have between one and four entrances, although as many
as eleven have been recorded. Such entrances were usually centrally placed in
the sides of the camp and were often protected by additional defensive
outworks. Roman camps are found throughout much of England, although most
known examples lie in the midlands and north. Around 140 examples have been
identified and, as one of the various types of defensive enclosure built by
the Roman Army, particularly in hostile upland and frontier areas, they
provide an important insight into Roman military strategy and organisation.
All well-preserved examples are identified as being of national importance.

The Roman camp on Huntington South Moor, 300m east of Huntington Grange,
is one of only four identified camps closely associated to the Roman
legionary fortress at York. Part of the camp's ramparts survive as a low
earthwork and additional features will survive as buried remains such as
refuse pits and groupings of post holes left by timber structures. Given
the survival of upstanding earthworks, the buried remains are expected to
be better preserved than those of the second camp 250m to the south east
that has been damaged by modern ploughing. Few camps have been identified
in lowland areas nationally because it is thought that many have been
obliterated by centuries of agricultural activity. Those with upstanding
earthworks, as opposed to most which only survive as crop marks, are
especially rare nationally. The close proximity of this second camp, along
with the archaeological information gained from its excavation, further
enhances the monument's importance.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Horne, P, 'Aerial Survey Report Series' in Huntington South Moor Roman Camps, , Vol. AER/6/22, (2002)
Oblique AP, RAF, RAF 540/613/5009, (1953)

Source: Historic England

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