Monument record M5048 - "Roman Bank", Blyth & Scrooby




Grid reference Centred SK 64119 88607 (915m by 3032m)
Map sheet SK68NW
District Bassetlaw
Locality Serlby
Civil Parish Scrooby, Bassetlaw
Civil Parish Blyth, Bassetlaw


Type and Period (2)

Full Description

Between Blyth and Scrooby is an important rampart and fosse, trending nearly S to N. It is nearly 1.5 miles in length, and the fosse is used as a sunken road between the above villages. Its bank on the W side is enclosed in Serlby Park, to which it forms the manor boundary; the E side is fairly evenly divided between the parishes of Scrooby and Ranskill; the lands in the latter parish belonged to the Saxon Archbishops of York. The vallum is locally called "the Roman Bank", and the fosse "Roman Bank Lane" and "Long Bank Lane". Its origin is unknown, though possibly it is referred to in the following: "Matilda de Mules, 10 Ric I (1199) ought one mark for license to make a ditch between the wood of Serleby and the fields". (1)
The earthwork known as the Roman Bank ... has been traced for nearly a mile further to the N than marked on the present OS map. It may be classed, in all probability, with the travelling earthworks of the Dark Ages, such as Offa's Dyke. It consists of a high massive bank with the original ditch on the W. The intermittent ditch on the E has almost certainly been caused by the long passage of traffic. The bank must have formed a formidable defence work, as its front is secured through its whole length by the marshy bed of the River Ryton. Its S flank ends abruptly and, perhaps, originally in dense woodland. It is noteworthy that the present parish boundary follows the bank for the whole of its obviously visible course. Where the bank, as a useful landmark, ends at the N, the boundary forsakes it for the river, although the bank is traceable for another half mile to the N. It would appear that when the parish boundary was fixed presumably early in the Anglo Saxon era, this N extension of the bank had already been reduced in size under agriculture (confirming its antiquity ?). (2)
This earthwork is as described by (2). Its period and purpose are uncertain but a Ro date is unlikely. (3)
S of SK 645900 the earthwork survives as published, but northwards where it crosses arable land it is no longer visible on the ground (see L 5088). (4)
See maps SK 68 NW and 69 SW.

Data Held (Document). SNT2647.

Maps, OS, Parish File

Data Held: Ground Photograph (Ground photograph). SNT2646.

8 colour print, SMR

<1> VCH, 1906, Notts, pp 313-4 (Published document). SNT1383.

<2> Thoroton Society, 1939, TTS, pp 12-13 (Published document). SNT356.

<3> Wardale CF, 1959, Pers Comm (Personal comment). SNT1394.

<4> Seaman BH, 1974, Pers Comm (Personal comment). SNT1252.

Sources/Archives (6)

  • --- Ground photograph: Data Held: Ground Photograph.
  • --- Document: Data Held.
  • <1> Published document: VCH. 1906. Notts. 1. pp 313-4.
  • <2> Published document: Thoroton Society. 1939. TTS. 43. pp 12-13.
  • <3> Personal comment: Wardale CF. 1959. Pers Comm.
  • <4> Personal comment: Seaman BH. 1974. Pers Comm.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (2)

Related Events/Activities (0)

Record last edited

Jan 19 2023 7:34PM

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