Ancient Monuments

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Lamb Knowe, bank barrow and Roman camp 480m NNW of Raeburnfoot

A Scheduled Monument in Annandale East and Eskdale, Dumfries and Galloway

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Latitude: 55.285 / 55°17'6"N

Longitude: -3.1819 / 3°10'54"W

OS Eastings: 325031

OS Northings: 599624

OS Grid: NY250996

Mapcode National: GBR 676B.X8

Mapcode Global: WH6WX.3F28

Entry Name: Lamb Knowe, bank barrow and Roman camp 480m NNW of Raeburnfoot

Scheduled Date: 9 January 1998

Last Amended: 9 March 2016

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM7603

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: barrow; Roman: camp

Location: Eskdalemuir

County: Dumfries and Galloway

Electoral Ward: Annandale East and Eskdale

Traditional County: Dumfriesshire


The monument comprises the remains of a Neolithic bank barrow dating probably from the late 3rd to 2nd millennium BC, and a Roman temporary camp dating probably from the late 1st century AD. The bank barrow runs NNE-SSW through the Roman camp. Both the barrow and the camp defences survive as slight upstanding earthworks and are also visible on oblique aerial photographs. The monument is located on the SSW flank of Lamb Knowe, a ridge lying between the Rae and Moodlaw burns, which descends towards the River White Esk; the barrow runs down the ridge from around 250m to 210m OD. The monument was first scheduled in 1998, but only included the bank barrow: the present amendment rectifies this.

The bank barrow is approximately 650m long. It comprises an oval terminal mound at the NNE end, measuring about 9.7m by 8m and 1.5m in height, with a long tail mound running NNE-SSW, which is about 6m wide and stands 0.5m in height, with a ditch on either side. The bank has been levelled by cultivation at the SSW end and its original length is uncertain.

The Roman camp measures 454m NE-SW by 290m transversely, enclosing an area of approximately 13ha. It comprises a low turf rampart accompanied by an external ditch and counterscarp bank. The camp appears to have had four gates, one in each side; the two which are most clearly visible, on the NE and NW sides, are 'Stracathro'-type gateways.

The scheduled area is irregular on plan, to include the remains described above and an area around them within which evidence relating to the monument's construction, use and abandonment is expected to survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The scheduling excludes the above-ground elements of all post-and-wire fences.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because it has significant potential to contribute to our understanding of both Neolithic burial and ceremonial monuments and Roman camps and forts. The long bank barrow is particularly valuable because it comprises a rare monument type in Scotland and includes upstanding remains. The Roman camp is also very important because it is a rare 'Stracathro' type, and the only one of this type to preserve upstanding remains. Both the barrow and the camp appear relatively undisturbed and have high archaeological potential for the preservation of important remains, including artefacts and ecofacts. We can expect them both to preserve evidence for their date, duration of use, method of construction, and any development sequence. They can be compared with other Neolithic burial monuments and Roman military installations respectively elsewhere in Scotland, and with other broadly contemporary (Neolithic and Roman) monuments in the area. The barrow can enhance understanding of Neolithic burial practices and the contemporary population; and the camp can inform understanding of the daily lives of Roman soldiers and enhance knowledge of the impact of Roman campaigns on local Iron Age communities and the landscape. If this monument was to be lost or damaged, our understanding of Neolithic ceremonial monuments and Roman military structures and logistics would be significantly diminished.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



Historic Environment Scotland reference number CANMORE ID 274593, 97647 (accessed on 16/11/2009).

Brophy, K 1998 'Cursus monuments and bank barrows of Tayside and Fife', in Barclay, G J and Maxwell, G S (eds) The Cleaven Dyke and Littleour: monuments in the Neolithic of Tayside, Society of Antiquaries of Scotland monog no 13. Edinburgh: 92-108.

Jones, R H 2011, Roman Camps in Scotland. Edinburgh: Society of Antiquaries of Scotland monog ser.

Jones, R H and McKeague, P 2009, 'A 'Stracathro'-gated temporary camp at Raeburnfoot, Dumfriesshire, Scotland', Britannia 40, 123-36.

RCAHMS 1997, Eastern Dumfriesshire: an archaeological landscape. Edinburgh.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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