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Authority English Heritage
Other Ref SM Cat. No. 430
Date assigned Thursday, January 21, 1999
Date last amended


REASONS FOR DESIGNATION The East Moors in Derbyshire includes all the gritstone moors east of the River Derwent. It covers an area of 105 sq km, of which around 63% is open moorland and 37% is enclosed. As a result of recent and on-going archaeological survey, the East Moors area is becoming one of the best recorded upland areas in England. On the enclosed land the archaeological remains are fragmentary, but survive sufficiently well to show that early human activity extended beyond the confines of the open moors. On the open moors there is significant and well-articulated evidence over extensive areas for human exploitation of the gritstone uplands from the Neolithic to the post-medieval periods. Bronze Age activity accounts for the most intensive use of the moorlands. Evidence for it includes some of the largest and best preserved field systems and cairnfields in northern England as well settlement sites, numerous burial monuments, stone circles and other ceremonial remains which, together, provide a detailed insight into life in the Bronze Age. Also of importance is the well preserved and often visible relationship between the remains of earlier and later periods since this provides an insight into successive changes in land use through time. A large number of the prehistoric sites on the moors, because of their rarity in a national context, excellent state of preservation and inter-connections, will be identified as nationally important. 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 occasions their distribution pattern can be seen to define field plots. Occasionally some of the cairns were used for funerary purposes, although without excavation it is difficult to determine which cairns contain burials. Clearance cairns were constructed from the Neolithic period (from c.3400 BC), although the majority date from the Bronze Age (2000-700 BC). Cairnfields can also retain information concerning the development of land use and agricultural practices as well as the diveristy of beliefs and social organisation during the prehistoric period. The cairnfield 450m south west of Leam Hall Farm is well preserved and retains evidence for both settlement and agriculture. DETAILS The monument includes a prehistoric cairnfield located on a slight ridge. The cairnfield is one of a group of similar monuments providing evidence of extensive prehistoric agriculture on Eyam Moor. The monument comprises a series of well-preserved cairns of medium and small stones gathered in prehistoric times as the result of land clearance. There are approximately 90 cairns ranging from about 1.5m to 6m in diameter, although several are ovoid in shape. Some of the cairns have been disturbed, probably by 19th century antiquarians, but the majority are complete. There are also traces of linear clearance banks within the cairnfield, indicating that the area was divided into field plots, probably by hedges or fences. Two probable house platforms have also been identified, although there are likely to be others. The monument is interpreted as an area of intense agricultural settlement dating to the Bronze Age. All shooting butts are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included. SELECTED SOURCES Book Reference - Author: Barnatt, J. W. - Title: Highlow Hall and Eyam Moor ... Archaeological Survey 1994-5. - Date: 1995 - Type: DESC TEXT - Description: unpublished report Book Reference - Author: Barnatt, J. W. - Title: Highlow Hall and Eyam Moor ... Archaeological Survey 1994-5. - Date: 1995 - Type: DESC TEXT - Description: unpublished survey report Article Reference - Author: Barnatt, J. W. - Title: Bronze Age Remains on the East Moors of Derbyshire - Date: 1986 - Journal Title: Derbyshire Archaeological journal - Volume: 106 - Page References: 68-70 - Type: DESC TEXT

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Sources (1)

  • Scheduling record: English Heritage. 1999. Scheduling notification: Cairnfield and associated settlement, 450m south west of Leam Hall Farm. List entry no. 1018477. SM Cat. No. 430.



Grid reference Centred SK 2282 7901 (305m by 329m)
Map sheet SK27NW

Related Monuments/Buildings (2)

Record last edited

Aug 9 2013 1:49PM

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