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Historic England Research Records

Lamel Hill

Hob Uid: 58203
Location :
York
York
York
Grid Ref : SE6145050950
Summary : A natural rise on which a mound was built in 1644 for use as a gun platform for the siege of York, and subsequently converted to other uses. The mound was formerly the site of a cemetery, excavated in the 19th century, and thought to be Anglian. Further excavations in 1983 at Belle Vue House located 38 inhumations, most aligned East-West and thought to be Anglian. The mound was used as a Windmill mound until c.1840, and was evidently used as a garden prospect mound, presumably in the later 19th century. It now lies within the gardens of The Retreat.
More information : [SE 6145 5095] Lamel Hill [TI] Tumulus [OE] (1)

Lamel Hill was a battery site during the siege of York in
1644 and in recent years served as a windmill steading until
c.1840. The mound has a diameter E-W of C. 110 ft. and 125 ft.
N-S with a height varying from C.14 1/2 ft. - 22 1/2 ft.
Excavation by Thurnam revealed coins of Charles I, pieces of
cast iron, and numerous disarticulated skeletons in the upper
surface of the mound. Beneath true ground surface, were
undisturbed burials in the centre of which, but on ground level,
was a large urn. Thurnam concluded that the site was that of an
Anglian cemetery on which a mound had been erected for siege
purposes in 1644 - Scheduled as an ancient monument. (2; 3)

Published survey (1:1250, 1962) revised (4) Lamel Hill now supports a summer house, ornamental trees, and terraced paths, and though
its true contours are no longer discernible, the dimensions
given above are generally correct. Mr. H. Ramm (4a) has
reviewed the evidence based on the excavation of Thurnam, and
suggests that the mound is no earlier than mid. 16th c. He
cites as one reason, the location of the urn that was found
(which is now identified as 16th-17thc.) and suggests that
the interpretation of Thurnam's sectional diagram bears out
this assumption. The urn is displayed in the Friends' Retreat
Hospital, and is of typical 16th-17th c. unglazed coarse ware.(4)

RCHME carried out a Level 1 field investigation of the monument in late March 1999 (5). It remains in basically the condition described by previous sources. According to the Victoria County History, the windmill was in decay by 1836; it was almost certainly demolished c.1839, when the mound was converted to serve as a prospect mound following its inclusion within the gardens of The Retreat (SE 65 SW 281). (5)

Published references to the Anglo-Saxon grave goods. (6; 7)

Lamel Hill was investigated again at Level 1 to examine the possible relationship between the mound and medieval broad ridge and furrow on the slope to the south (SE 65 SW 505), with a view to furthering the understanding of the mound's date of origin. Regrettably, due to landscaping within the grounds of The Retreat, the stratigraphic relationship is uncertain. However, on the slope outside the Retreat, the ridges do not exhibit a reverse-S pattern, hinting that the mound is indeed of post-medieval origin. (8)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 1:1250 1962
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Source Number : 2
Source : Proceedings of the Yorkshire Philosophical Society
Source details :
Page(s) : 98-105
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 1, 1855
Source Number : 3
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : List Anc.Mons.1961 p.106 (M.O.W.)
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Source Number : 4
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 ECW 11-JUN-63
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 4a
Source : Oral information, correspondence (not archived) or staff comments
Source details : H. RAMM MA. FSA RCHM York.
Page(s) :
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Source Number : 5
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : RCHME: Field observation on SE 65 SW 25
Page(s) :
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Source Number : 6
Source : A gazetteer of early Anglo-Saxon burial sites
Source details :
Page(s) : 293
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 7
Source : The use of grave-goods in conversion-period England, c.600-c.850
Source details :
Page(s) : 190
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 261
Source Number : 8
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : English Heritage: Urban Commons project: Walmgate Stray survey
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Early Medieval
Display Date : Late Saxon
Monument End Date : 1066
Monument Start Date : 871
Monument Type : Cemetery
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : Civil War
Monument End Date : 1644
Monument Start Date : 1644
Monument Type : Battery, Siegework
Evidence : Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date :
Monument End Date : 1839
Monument Start Date : 1772
Monument Type : Windmill Mound
Evidence : Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date :
Monument End Date : 1899
Monument Start Date : 1839
Monument Type : Prospect Mound
Evidence : Earthwork
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date :
Monument End Date : 1970
Monument Start Date : 1900
Monument Type : Prospect Mound
Evidence : Earthwork

Components and Objects:
Period : Early Medieval
Component Monument Type : Cemetery
Object Type : KNIFE, BUCKLE
Object Material :

Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : NY 287
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SE 65 SW 25
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 1403475
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 534980
Relationship type : General association

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : LAMEL HILL
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1847-01-01
End Date : 1849-12-31
Associated Activities : FIELD OBSERVATION ON SE 65 SW 25
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1963-06-11
End Date : 1963-06-11
Associated Activities : 99A HESLINGTON ROAD (BELLE VUE HOUSE)
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1983-01-01
End Date : 1983-12-31