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Viewing website implies consent to set cookies on your computer. Full details Swaledale and Arkengarthdale Archaeology Group
Registered Charitable Incorporated Organisation Number 1155775
SWAAG Honorary President:
Tim Laurie FSA

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 *****SWAAG_ID***** 118
 Date Entered 06/02/2011
 Updated on 06/02/2011
 Recorded by Tim Laurie
 Category Ring Cairns
 Record Type Archaeology
 Site Access Public Access Land
 Record Date 06/02/2011
 Location Grinton CP. Harkerside Moor. Harker Mires.
 Civil Parish Grinton
 Brit. National Grid SE 03531 97610
 Altitude 340m
 Geology Lateral moraine over shales, Underset Limestone Series.
 Record Name Ring Cairn or embanked stone circle at Harker Mires.
 Record Description This prominent and largely undisturbed Ring Cairn (alias: enclosed cremation cemetery or embanked stone circle), comprises a (relatively) massive stone rubble bank 2.5-3.0m wide revetted on both internal and external faces with occasional large orthostats, some fallen, some standing � which encloses a subcircular area approximately 12m diameter. An entrance 3.m wide is evident on the eastern perimeter . See 1:100 detail survey plan. This is the best preserved and most convincing ring cairn of the eastern Dales.
 Dimensions 20m Diameter overall
 Additional Notes This site (see 1:100 plan) is centrally located within a co-axial field system (GRI 47. 3113) and cairnfield, (GRI 11. 2650, GRI 50. 3112), see 1:2000 survey plan. There are circular cairns in the vicinity including a small ring cairn (GRI 61. 3133) which may also be burial monuments , not just clearance. A substantial burnt mound (GRI10.2649) is located some 200m to the SSW and may be contemporary with the cairn field. The coaxial field boundaries icorporate at least one cairn and is therefore later, but probably not much later, in date. The importance of this site is that, uniquely for this class of monument, it has NOT been excavated. Other, much smaller ring cairns, which may be the perimeter of reduced cairns, are located on Fremington Edge, Marrick Moor and on Skelton Moor. The larger, 10-20m diameter slight ring banks previously recorded as ring cairns are more probably round house enclosures. It is very possible that this ring cairn was originally a round house, being converted to an enclosed cremation cemetery on abandonment. The best analogy for this site is that on Danby Rigg, NYM. Dated to 1745-1675 Cal. B.C. (Harding A.F. et al 1994.) Other parallels are offered by the more numerous examples of Craven. Ring cairns have proved to be multi period and to have several episodes of construction, that at Oddendale, near Shap in Cumbria (Turnbull and Walsh 1997) commenced use at around 2800Cal BC as a double concentric ring of large timber posts,this being changed to a low slight ring bank at a date after around 1800BCapproximately 1000years later. References Atkinson, J.C. 1891. Forty Years in a Moorland Parish. London. Macmillan. Laurie, T.C. in Spratt, D and Burgess, C. 1985. Upland Settlement in Britain. BAR British Series 143, 135-162. Harding A.F. with Ostoja-Zagorski Archaeol. J. (1994),16-97. Turnbull, P and Walsh, D 1997. A Prehistoric Ritual Sequence at Oddendale, Near Shap. Trans C& W A7 A Soc. VolXCVll, p11-44.
 Image 1 ID 254         Click image to enlarge
 Image 1 Description Harker Mires Ring Cairn. Site Plan.
 Image 2 ID 255         Click image to enlarge
 Image 2 Description Harker Mires. Ring Cairn, cairnfield and field system. Fleming and Laurie 1989, Interim Report.Figure
 Image 3 ID 256         Click image to enlarge
 Image 3 Description Harker Mires Ring Cairn. View westward. Note the dale flood plain is not visible.
 Image 4 ID 257         Click image to enlarge
 Image 4 Description Harker Mires Ring Cairn. View eastward.
 Image 5 ID 258         Click image to enlarge
 Image 5 Description Harker Mires Ring Cairn. View northward.
 Image 6 ID 259         Click image to enlarge
 Image 6 Description Harker Mires Ring Cairn. View northward to Fremington Edge
 Image 7 ID 260         Click image to enlarge
 Image 7 Description Harker Mires Ring Cairn. Detail of large orthostat. (Standing stone on edge).
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