Ancient Monuments

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Hawkshaw Farm, unenclosed platform settlement 1240m east of

A Scheduled Monument in Tweeddale West, Scottish Borders

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Latitude: 55.4872 / 55°29'13"N

Longitude: -3.4444 / 3°26'39"W

OS Eastings: 308825

OS Northings: 622438

OS Grid: NT088224

Mapcode National: GBR 44DZ.3T

Mapcode Global: WH6VT.2B2S

Entry Name: Hawkshaw Farm, unenclosed platform settlement 1240m E of

Scheduled Date: 22 November 1968

Last Amended: 15 March 2019

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM2751

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: platform settlement

Location: Tweedsmuir

County: Scottish Borders

Electoral Ward: Tweeddale West

Traditional County: Peeblesshire


The monument comprises an unenclosed platform settlement terraced into the western slopes of The Rig above the Fruid Water. It survives as a series of six or seven platforms, which are likely to date to the Bronze Age.

The platforms, which would have supported timber round houses or other structures, are terraced in the slope of The Rig. They average 8-9m across and survive as grass covered platforms, with a scarp or scoop to the rear and a lip or apron on the downslope side.

The scheduled area is irregular. It includes the remains described above and an area around within which evidence relating to the monument's construction, use and abandonment is expected to survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map. Specifically excluded from the scheduled area is the line of utility poles near the modern road.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

The cultural significance of the monument has been assessed as follows:

Intrinsic Characteristics

The monument is an example of an unenclosed platform settlement, visible as a series of terraced platforms above the Fruid Water. These settlements typical consist of a series of oval or circular level platforms backed by a crescentic rear scarp formed by cutting into the slope and fronted by a forward scarp which falls to meet the natural land surface below. Although seven platforms are recorded in the Peeblesshire Inventory (RCAHMS 1967) and on the current Ordnance Survey mapping, only six platforms are visible. The seventh may be obscured by vegetation. Although the monument is located within an area of commercial forestry, the six visible platforms are clear and survive in a good condition. The level of preservation and the cohesive nature of the settlement are an important aspect of the monuments' intrinsic characteristics and contribute to its national importance.

Unenclosed platform settlements have been shown by archaeological excavation to be Bronze Age in date. There is no clear indication whether the remains at this site have an extended development sequence, however, other examples indicate that this may be the case, for example Green Knowe (scheduled monument SM2760) and Fruid Water (Canmore ID 282927). Scientific study of the form and construction of the platforms has the potential to clarify the date of the remains and the development sequence at this site. Comparative study of the form and structure of unenclosed platform settlements has the potential to provide information about the design, construction and development of later prehistoric settlement. Excavations at other monuments of this type, for example Lintshie Gutter (scheduled monument SM4603), have shown that the platforms were utilised both as a stance for timber roundhouses and as platforms for non-domestic buildings such as byres.

There is good potential for the survival of archaeological deposits, including occupation and abandonment debris, artefacts and environmental remains such as charcoal and pollen within, beneath and around the remains of the platforms. These deposits can help us understand more about prehistoric domestic and agricultural practice, and the significance of materials, technology and craft in a domestic-agricultural context. This monument has the potential to add to our understanding of settlement, land-use and environment during later prehistory, and provide information about the economy, diet and social status of the occupants and the structure of contemporary society and economy.

Contextual Characteristics

Unenclosed platform settlements have been identified across southern Scotland and northern England. In Scotland the National Record of the Historic Environment lists around 140 unenclosed platform settlements, the majority located within the Scottish Borders and South Lanarkshire council areas. 32 of these settlements are located in and around Tweedsmuir and when taken with another group in and around Crawford in South Lanarkshire (14kms to the west) this is the largest known concentration of unenclosed platform settlements found in Scotland.

The local landscape contains also a number of other sites such as burnt mounds, cairns and enclosed cremation cemeteries. Some or all of these are likely to date to the Bronze Age and therefore constitute and important grouping of Scottish Bronze Age monuments. Scientific study of the location and distribution of these monuments has the potential to provide information on the Bronze Age landscape of the Upper Tweed valley.

Associative Characteristics

There are no known associative characteristics which contribute to the site's national importance.

Statement of National Importance

This monument is of national importance because it makes a significant addition to our understanding of later prehistoric society and the construction, use and development of settlement in the south of Scotland. This unenclosed platform settlement is a good example of later prehistoric settlement that retains its field characteristics to a marked degree. As such there is significant potential for the survival of archaeological deposits within and around the platforms. As a well preserved example of an unenclosed platform settlement, the monument can significantly enhance our understanding of domestic buildings, agriculture and economy in the Bronze Age in southern Scotland. The close proximity of other, probably contemporaneous, prehistoric sites adds to the monument's importance and enhances our knowledge of the Bronze Age landscape of southern Scotland.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



Historic Environment Scotland reference number CANMORE ID 48554 (accessed on 12/11/2018).

Feacham, R. W. 1960. Unenclosed Platform Settlements. Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland 94. Vol 94, pp. 79-85.

Frodsham, P. 2004. Archaeology in Northumberland National Park. Council for British Archaeology, York. Pp. 25-36.

Jobey, G. 1980. Green Knowe unenclosed platform settlement and Harehope Cairn. Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland 110. Vol 110, pp. 72-113.

Johnston R. 2005. A social archaeology of garden plots in the Bronze Age of northern and western Britain. World Archaeology, Vol 37:2, pp. 211-223.

Pope, R. 2015. Bronze Age architectural traditions: dates and landscapes. Scotland in Later Prehistoric Europe pp. 20-61.

RCAHMS 1967. The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. Peeblesshire: an inventory of the ancient monuments, 2v. Edinburgh. Page: 73

Terry et al., J. 1993. Bodsberry Hill Unenclosed Platform Settlement, Near Elvanfoot, Strathclyde.

Terry, J., 1995. Excavation at Lintshie Gutter Unenclosed Platform Settlement, Crawford, Lanarkshire, 1991. Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland 125. Vol 125, pp. 369-427.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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