Huntcliff Signal Station

North Sea Watch Towers and Watch-tower

The site of a Roman signal station at Huntcliff, thought to be of late fourth century date – probably constructed in AD 367 and used until AD 390. A Roman signal station at Huntcliff was discovered circa 1862 and excavated by Hornsby and Stanton in 1911-12. Part of the site had been destroyed by sea erosion and only the southern portion survived.

Plan. A circular well nearly 14ft deep contained the remains of 14 adults and children, Roman pottery, a leather sandal and cloth. The human remains indicated a violent death, possibly during a raid on the site. Finds from station included 25 coins of mainly Valentinian I and Gratian, suggesting an approximate occupation between 370-390 AD. Fragments of black calcite gritted cooking pots from the site are now classified as Huntcliff ware and appear to be confined to the short period when Huntcliff and the other Yorkshire signal stations flourished.