View north from Yeavering Bell
|Summit:|| 1,184 feet NT929292 |
Yeavering Bell is a twin-peaked hill near the River Glen in Northumberland, near Wooler and the hamlet of Yeavering, in the Cheviots. The hill reaches 1,184 feet above sea level and is encircled by the wall of a late-prehistoric hill fort, a tribal centre called in the British language and Old Welsh Din Gefron, from which the name stems the Old English *geafringa-, and from this 'Yeavering'.
The hill fort encloses an area of approximately 12 acres and is enclosed by a stone wall, upwards of 10 feet thick, having four entrances into it, one of which is defended by a guard-house; and within this area is an inner fort, excavated out of the rock, of an oval form, measuring 13 feet across at the widest part. On the sides of the hill, and in a high valley between the Bell and the next hill, called Whitelaw, there are many remains of stone huts rudely flagged, some in groups surrounded by rampiers, and others isolated. Barrows, too, are numerous here.
The hillfort enclosure was constructed in two phases, according to a survey by English Heritage. The 'roundhouses' within the fort suggests communal living but these need not all have been dwellings. The differing size of these buildings may have indicated the status of their original occupants.
The buildings of the fort would have been bright pink when first constructed, being made from local andesite. This stone is pink when quarried and turns, after a few years' exposure to the elements, to a dull grey.
- Oswald A and Pearson S (2005) Yeavering Bell Hillfort. 98-126 in Frodsham and O'Brien.
- Pearson S (1998) Yeavering Bell Hillfort, Northumberland. English Heritage: Archaeological Investigation Report Series AI/3/2001.
- W & R Chambers (1869): The Book of Days, 17 December
- W&R Chambers
- National Park - Yeavering Bell