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Monument record MDR8612 - Romano-British farmstead and associated walls, Roystone Grange (Roystone Grange II), Ballidon

Type and Period (3)

  • (Roman to Saxon - 43 AD to 1065 AD)
  • (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

Remains of a small Romano-British farmstead and associated small field systems on a dolomite outcrop south of Roystone Rocks. The site comprises a small enclosure built of orthostats with field boundaries of similar construction butting up to it. The area within the enclosure was paved with limestone slabs, beneath which was found a quantity of flint. All the flints are being analysed by M Edmonds of Sheffield University (1997) [SMR 973]. (1,4) Photographic record. (2) The monument became scheduled on 10th June 1998. It includes the remains of a building, interpreted as a farmhouse of the Romano-British period, together with associated terraces and fragments of enclosure walls. The farmstead is located at the edge of near-level ground, overlooking a dry limestone valley. The site was partially excavated in the 1980s. (3) A quantity of prehistoric flint was found beneath a limestone slab paving area within the enclosure of the Romano-British farmstead. (5) Site monitoring has been carried out and site appears not to be under threat. (6) To date, there has been one postulated example of archaeological evidence for Roman or earlier surface working, found during extensive excavation. Here an ancient field boundary was suggested to overlie the upcast from a backfilled open-cut into a scrin, the field bank was suggested to be of 2nd century AD date. However recent re-evaluation of the Roystone Grange field boundaries has led to the questioning of this evidence. It is argued that the boundary feature was built in the medieval period and the stratigraphic evidence with regard to the lead working is at best ambiguous, it is concluded that the lead mining is of medieval or post-medieval date. (7) In the winter of 1977 the farm owner uncovered a Roman period burial during excavations for a cowshed extension. Subsequent examination of the area around the burial site revealed a number of well preserved house platforms and related enclosure walls. Excavation and field survey carried out over a three week period the following summer indicated that the houses on them had been constructed in the early 2nd century AD and the related enclosure wall which surrounded these houses had also been constructed in the first half of the 2nd century. All the enclosure-style walls at Roystone have been securely dated to the 2nd century. The walls have been divided in groups: Wall type 1 the most recent, obvious and well-known construction style, dated to the 18th and 19th century. Wall type 2 is less distinctive and consists of small dolomitic livestone boulders, but is of 16th century date - due to the reformation of the church by Henry VIII, Roystone passed from monastic hands to private ownership, thus reflected in renewed enclosures. Wall type 3 dates to the 12th and 13th centuries and is easily recogniseable as massive dolomitic (brown) limestone boulders. Wall type 4 is dated to around 120 AD (2nd-4th centuries), made of two rows often as much as 2m apart filled with limestone rubble, such walls could have been used to enclose mines or farms. Wall type 5 is date to the 3rd milBC, where only the foundations remain. (8)

Sources/Archives (8)

  • <1> Personal Observation: Smith, K (PPJPB). K Smith (Peak Park Joint Planning Board) personal communication. 1997.
  • <2> Photograph: Peak District National Park Authority (PDNPA). Slide Collection. 973.1-5.
  • <3> Scheduling record: English Heritage. 1998. Scheduling Notification: Romano-British settlement and field system, 600m south of Roystone Grange. 29829. 411. Cat. No.: 411.
  • <4> Unpublished document: Rylatt, J (PDNPA). 2004. Ballidon Quarry, Ballidon, Derbyshire, archaeological field survey, upland option. pp 2-3, illus.
  • <5> Personal Observation: Smith, K (PPJPB). K Smith (Peak Park Joint Planning Board) personal communication. 1997.
  • <6> Unpublished document: Marriott, J (PDNPA). 2011. Scheduled Monument Monitoring Form: Romano-British settlement and field system 600m S of Roystone Grange.
  • <7> Article in serial: Barnatt, J. 1999. 'Prehistoric and Roman mining in the Peak District- present knowledge and future research', Mining History: The Bulletin of the Peak District Mines Historical Society.
  • <8> Article in monograph: Wildgoose, M. 'Roystone Grange- how a study of standing field walls revealed 5000 years of farming history', Current Archaeology.



Grid reference Centred SK 1997 5617 (204m by 181m) (Approximate)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (2)

  • EDR4128
  • EDR3225

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Record last edited

Sep 2 2015 11:58AM

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