Register of ancient monuments

Reference number 1018542

Late Prehistoric Enclosed Settlement North West Of Goose Clough
Cold Edge Road


The monument includes a 'D'-shaped prehistoric enclosed settlement, situated on Ovenden Moor, at the Carrs, 500m north west of Goose Clough on Ovenden Moor.

The enclosure is approximately 88m long and 80m wide, and is formed by a ditch with both internal and external banks. The ditch is about 4m wide and 0.5m deep. The inner bank is approximately 3m wide and 0.5m high. The outer bank is about 4m wide and attains a maximum height of 1m. A natural drainage channel interrupts the ditch and banks on the west side of the enclosure. On the south and east sides, parts of the ditch and banks have been removed by stone quarrying, and part is obscured by a track to a small building. The inside of the enclosure is partly subdivided by a bank and ditch running part way across the enclosure from the north edge. There is a small earth mound in the approximate centre of the enclosure, and a small rectangular depression close by. These features may result from excavations in 1951 which recovered prehistoric pottery.


The Pennine uplands of northern England contain a wide variety of prehistoric remains, including cairns, enclosures, carved rocks, settlements and field systems. These are evidence of the widespread exploitation of these uplands throughout later prehistory. During the last millennium BC a variety of different types of enclosed settlements developed. These include hillforts, which have substantial earthworks and are usually located on hilltops. Other types of enclosed settlement of this period are less obviously defensive, as they have less substantial earthworks and are usually in less prominent positions. In the Pennines a number of late prehistoric enclosed settlements survive as upstanding monuments. Where upstanding earthworks survive, the settlements are between 0.4ha and 10ha in area, and are usually located on ridges or hillside terraces. The enclosing earthworks are usually slight, most consisting of a ditch with an internal bank, or with an internal and external bank, but examples with an internal ditch and with no ditch are known. They are sub-circular, sub-rectangular, or oval in shape. Few of these enclosed settlements have been subject to systematic excavation, but they are thought to date from between the Late Bronze Age to the Romano-British period (c1000BC-AD400). Examples which have been excavated have presented evidence of settlement. Some appear to have developed from earlier palisaded enclosures. Unexcavated examples occasionally have levelled areas which may have contained buildings, but a proportion may have functioned primarily as stock enclosures. Enclosed settlements are a distinctive feature of the late prehistory of the Pennine uplands, and are important in illustrating the variety of enclosed settlement types which developed in many areas of Britain at this time. Examples where a substantial proportion of the enclosed settlement survives are considered to be nationally important.

The late prehistoric enclosed settlement 500m north west of Goose Clough survives well and contributes to the understanding of late prehistoric settlement and land use in northern England.

Last Updated: 07/10/2004