Keys to the Past

Kemylpeth (Alwinton)

Kemylpeth was a small medieval village overlying the remains of the Chew Green Roman forts. The site was excavated by archaeologists in the 1880s, and areas of the settlement were also uncovered during the excavations on the Roman forts in the 1930s. The remains of the village are visible as a series of rectangular platforms which are thought to have contained rectangular buildings and smaller enclosures, some of which may have been stock pens. A larger enclosure bounded by high banks and clearly part of the village is built close to the River Coquet. A rectangular building in the centre of one of the forts was probably a Norman chapel. It measures 18m by 9m and its walls stand to a height of 1m. In 1889 a stone cross was found near the chapel by shepherds. Documents tell us that this site was a resting place for travellers and drovers crossing the hill into and out of Scotland, and as early as 1249 it was known as the site where criminal cases relating to border raiding were tried. By 1550 the medieval settlement was known as Kemylpeth, when it was named in a survey. The Roman road of Dere Street clearly continued to be used as an into the medieval period.

Reference number:N14
Historical period: Medieval (1066 to 1540)
Legal status:Scheduled Ancient Monument

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See also:
Source of Reference
Local History of Alwinton


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Please note that this information has been compiled from a number of different sources. Durham County Council and Northumberland County Council can accept no responsibility for any inaccuracy contained therein. If you wish to use/copy any of the images, please ensure that you read the Copyright information provided.