Live Moor promontory fort

A small Bronze Age fort on the north-west corner of Live Moor, more often called Knolls End1Promontory fort on Live Moor, Whorlton – 1009359 | Historic England. [online] Available at: https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1009359?section=official-list-entry [Accessed 5 Apr. 2022].. Within spitting distance of the Cleveland Way and Coast to Coast footpaths but no Information Boards adorn the site. It was only “discovered” in 1979 so there have been no excavations done.

But …

… there are sure signs of recent burning of the heather which I thought was not permitted on “important monuments”2Heather and grass burning: rules and applying for a licence. [online] GOV.UK. Available at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/heather-and-grass-burning-apply-for-a-licence#:~:text=damage%20important%20monuments [Accessed 5 Apr. 2022]..

Coincidentally in July 2020, it was reported that a dead buzzard had been found in the previous March on Live Moor with enough of the poison chloralose in its body to kill a child3Dead North York Moors buzzard contained enough poison to kill a child. [online] Grough.co.uk. Available at: https://www.grough.co.uk/magazine/2020/07/24/dead-north-york-moors-buzzard-contained-enough-poison-to-kill-a-child [Accessed 5 Apr. 2022]..

Chloralose is a poison commonly used in rodenticides to kill mice but should only be used indoors and in small dosages. It is a commonly used illegally to kill of birds of prey.

One Reply to “Live Moor promontory fort”

  1. I have written to the National Park Authority and have received the following reply from their Head of Historic Environment:

    Many thanks for your enquiry concerning the scheduled promontory fort at Live Moor, and for sending the photo through.

    My understanding and reading of the rules is that it’s not permitted to cause damage to monuments through poorly managed heather burning, rather than it being forbidden to burn heather over important heritage sites. Normal good practise is to manage heather burns as ‘cool’ burns, which are undertaken rapidly in the right weather and ground conditions, and where care is taken to avoid any risk of the burn causing damage to the peaty soils beneath the heather. From the photo you sent, I cannot see any signs that a severe fire has happened at Knolls End.

    I think it’s worth my pointing out that a very substantial percentage of the protected (scheduled) archaeological sites in the National Park are located on moorland that is managed in rotational burns for grouse shooting. In places some Estates are now starting to cut rather than burn heather, and whilst this is desirable in a number of ways, and has significant benefits for the health of the blanket peat, it is not an approach without risks for archaeological remains. Significant damage can be caused to archaeological earthworks through vehicle compaction, or by the clipping of stonework with a flail. There are also risks in not managing the heather over such sites, which can lead to the loss of earthworks visually, and perhaps more importantly a severe fire risk with the presence of more fuel over the archaeological remains.

    Please do ask if you have any further questions.

    Kind Regards,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.