Cheviot Hills

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Cheviot Hills
The Cheviot - geograph.org.uk - 246415.jpg
The Cheviot and Coldburn Hill
Lammermuir Moorfoot and Cheviot Hills.png
Relief map showing the Lammermuir, Moorfoot, and Cheviot Hills
Northumberland UK location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Location in Northumberland
Location Northumberland, England, UK
OS grid NT905205
Coordinates 55°28′41″N2°09′07″W / 55.478°N 2.152°W / 55.478; -2.152 Coordinates: 55°28′41″N2°09′07″W / 55.478°N 2.152°W / 55.478; -2.152

The Cheviot Hills ( /ˈvɪət/ ), or sometimes The Cheviots, are a range of uplands straddling the Anglo-Scottish border between Northumberland and the Scottish Borders. The English section is within the Northumberland National Park. The range includes The Cheviot (the highest hill), plus Hedgehope Hill to the east, Windy Gyle to the west, and Cushat Law and Bloodybush Edge to the south.

Contents

The hills are sometimes considered a part of the Southern Uplands of Scotland as they adjoin the uplands to the north. Since the Pennine Way runs through the region, the hills are also considered a part of the northern Pennines although they are separated from the Cheviot Hills by the Tyne Gap, part of which lies within the southern extent of the Northumberland National Park. [1] [2]

The Cheviot Hills are primarily associated with geological activity from approximately 480 to 360 million years ago, when the continents of Avalonia and Laurentia collided, resulting in extensive volcanic activity (the Caledonian orogeny) which created a granite outcrop surrounded by lava flows.

The area enjoys a general right to roam under both the English Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 and the Scottish Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003.

The Southern Cheviots include the Otterburn Training Area, the UK's largest firing range, where the Ministry of Defence train up to 30,000 soldiers a year.

Description

The Cheviot is the highest hill in the range at 2,674 feet (815 m). Other notable tops are Hedgehope Hill, Windy Gyle, Cushat Law and Bloodybush Edge. Of the hills mentioned, only Windy Gyle has its summit on the border. The rest are all within England. The English section is protected within the Northumberland National Park.

Although many of the summits top 500 metres (1,600 ft), most have a relatively low prominence. Only three rise 150 metres (490 ft) or more above the surrounding terrain: The Cheviot itself, Shillhope Law and Housedon Hill, a small northern outlier (see Marilyn). To the south-west the Cheviots merge into the Kielder Forest group of hills.

Hedgehope Hill and overlooking the Breamish Valley Breamish Valley Cheviot Hills - geograph.org.uk - 121874.jpg
Hedgehope Hill and overlooking the Breamish Valley

There is a broad split between the northern and the southern Cheviots. The former encompass most of the high ground and are pierced by five main valleys:

The southern Cheviot hills encompass the slopes running down to the valley of the river Coquet.

Geology

The Cheviot Burn Cheviot Burn - geograph.org.uk - 96643.jpg
The Cheviot Burn

At the centre of the range is an outcrop of Early Devonian granite, the Cheviot Pluton, which is surrounded by Silurian and Devonian arc andesitic lava flows, tuffs and agglomerates of the Cheviot Volcanic Formation. These are in turn intruded by a swarm of igneous dykes with a predominantly calc-alkaline chemistry arranged radially around the pluton. [3] Both the pluton and the volcanic rocks owe their origin to the northward subduction of the oceanic crust attached to the former micro-continent of Avalonia beneath the Laurentian plate in the course of the Caledonian orogeny during the Ordovician and Silurian periods. [4] [5]

The surrounding lower ground is formed from Carboniferous Limestone, though much of it is obscured by superficial deposits of Quaternary age. [4]

History

College Valley in the northern Cheviots, near Hethpool Hillside and woodland plantations west of Hethpool - geograph.org.uk - 570797.jpg
College Valley in the northern Cheviots, near Hethpool

To the south of the Cheviot hills was the site of the Battle of Otterburn in 1388, and possibly to a separate bloody battle between English and Scottish forces, after which only 110 people survived, which is described in "The Ballad of Chevy Chase". (Note – the origin of the border skirmishes between Percy, the Earl of Northumberland, and the Scottish Earl of Douglas, may have been a hunt that strayed into Scotland and was interpreted as an invasion.) Two other related battles were the Battle of Homildon Hill, fought within the Cheviots near Wooler in 1402, and the Battle of Hedgeley Moor, fought north of Powburn in 1464.

Access

Most of the range on the English side is mapped as 'open country' and hence there is a general right to roam over it as prescribed in the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000. Traditional rights of access in Scotland, bolstered by the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003, provide for similar access for the public to the north of the border. In addition, a sparse network of public bridleways and footpaths stretches around the area, often providing useful means of access from the lower ground onto the open hills.

The northernmost leg of the Pennine Way runs from Byrness in England to Kirk Yetholm in Scotland. It is the longest, and most exposed, on the whole of the national trail. The Way follows the high level Border Ridge (literally the England–Scotland boundary fence) for nearly 20 miles (32 km) after the ascent to the ridge from Byrness. The terrain is boggy and remote, and two mountain refuge huts are situated on the Way for those too tired or weather-beaten to continue.

The town of Wooler in the Cheviot Fringe (the lowlands bordering the hills to the east) is often cited as the "Gateway to the Cheviots" as it is the largest town in the Cheviot region; the town also has easy access being on the major A697 road. [6]

Many walking routes have been established, such as:

Otterburn Army Training Estate

The Otterburn Army Training Estate (ATE) covers about 230 square kilometres (90 sq mi) of the Southern Cheviots, approximately 23% of the Northumberland National Park. It is owned by the Ministry of Defence (MoD), and used for training some 30,000 soldiers a year. Otterburn is the UK's largest firing range, and is in frequent use — artillery can be clearly heard from Lindisfarne to the north-east and Fontburn Reservoir in the south. Because of this, recreational use of the area is restricted, although it is possible for the public to use some parts of the estate subject to the relevant bylaws. The MoD publishes a booklet, Walks on Ministry of Defence Lands, which offers advice on this matter (see link below). [10] [11] [12]

Peaks over 500 metres in the Cheviot Hills

The peaks marked with a warning sign ( Nuvola apps important.svg ) lie within the danger area of the ATE Otterburn artillery range.[ verification needed ]

NameHeight (m)Height (ft) OS Grid reference Coordinates
The Cheviot 8152,674 NT909205 55°28′40″N2°08′35″W / 55.47778°N 2.14306°W / 55.47778; -2.14306 (Cheviot)
Cairn Hill 7772,549 NT903195 55°28′10″N2°09′10″W / 55.46944°N 2.15278°W / 55.46944; -2.15278 (Cairn Hill)
Hedgehope Hill 7142,343 NT944197 55°28′15″N2°05′20″W / 55.47083°N 2.08889°W / 55.47083; -2.08889 (Hedgehope Hill)
Comb Fell (peak to the east of the Fell)6522,139 NT924187 55°27′40″N2°07′10″W / 55.46111°N 2.11944°W / 55.46111; -2.11944 (Comb Fell)
Windy Gyle 6192,031 NT855153 55°25′50″N2°13′45″W / 55.43056°N 2.22917°W / 55.43056; -2.22917 (Windy Gyle)
Cushat Law 6152,018 NT927137 55°25′00″N2°06′50″W / 55.41667°N 2.11389°W / 55.41667; -2.11389 (Cushat Law)
Bloodybush Edge 6102,001 NT903144 55°25′20″N2°09′10″W / 55.42222°N 2.15278°W / 55.42222; -2.15278 (Bloodybush Edge)
The Schil 6011,972 NT869223 55°29′45″N2°12′30″W / 55.49583°N 2.20833°W / 55.49583; -2.20833 (The Schil)
peak SSW of Catcleuch Shin 5791,900 NT682052 55°20′20″N2°30′00″W / 55.33889°N 2.50000°W / 55.33889; -2.50000 (Catcleuch Shin)
Dunmoor Hill 5691,867 NT967187 55°27′30″N2°03′00″W / 55.45833°N 2.05000°W / 55.45833; -2.05000 (Dunmoor Hill)
The Curr 5641,850 NT850233 55°30′15″N2°14′10″W / 55.50417°N 2.23611°W / 55.50417; -2.23611 (The Curr)
Wholhope Hill 5631,847 NT941117 55°23′50″N2°05′40″W / 55.39722°N 2.09444°W / 55.39722; -2.09444 (Wholhope Hill)
Beefstand Hill 5621,844 NT821143 55°25′20″N2°16′55″W / 55.42222°N 2.28194°W / 55.42222; -2.28194 (Beefstand Hill)
Thirl Moor Nuvola apps important.svg 5581,831 NT806083 55°22′10″N2°18′20″W / 55.36944°N 2.30556°W / 55.36944; -2.30556 (Thirl Moor)
Mozie Law 5521,811 NT828150 55°25′45″N2°16′10″W / 55.42917°N 2.26944°W / 55.42917; -2.26944 (Mozie Law)
Carlin Tooth 5511,808 NT631024 55°18′55″N2°34′50″W / 55.31528°N 2.58056°W / 55.31528; -2.58056 (Carlin Tooth)
Limestone Knowe 5511,808 NT672018 55°18′30″N2°31′00″W / 55.30833°N 2.51667°W / 55.30833; -2.51667 (Limestone Knowe)
Hartshorn Pike 5491,801 NT627017 55°18′30″N2°35′10″W / 55.30833°N 2.58611°W / 55.30833; -2.58611 (Hartshorn Pike)
Black Hag 5491,801 NT861237 55°30′25″N2°13′05″W / 55.50694°N 2.21806°W / 55.50694; -2.21806 (Black Hag)
Scald Hill 5491,801 NT927218 55°29′20″N2°07′00″W / 55.48889°N 2.11667°W / 55.48889; -2.11667 (Scald Hill)
Carter Fell 5471,795 NT672035 55°19′25″N2°31′00″W / 55.32361°N 2.51667°W / 55.32361; -2.51667 (Carter Fell)
Yarnspath Law 5431,781 NT884133 55°24′45″N2°11′00″W / 55.41250°N 2.18333°W / 55.41250; -2.18333 (Yarnspath Law)
Newton Tors: summit5371,762 NT908269 55°32′10″N2°08′38″W / 55.53611°N 2.14389°W / 55.53611; -2.14389 (Newton Tors)
peak at Girdle Fell near White Crags 5361,759 NT697017 55°18′35″N2°28′40″W / 55.30972°N 2.47778°W / 55.30972; -2.47778 (Girdle Fell)
King's Seat5311,742 NT879173 55°27′00″N2°11′30″W / 55.45000°N 2.19167°W / 55.45000; -2.19167 (King's Seat)
Shill Moor 5281,732 NT944153 55°25′50″N2°05′15″W / 55.43056°N 2.08750°W / 55.43056; -2.08750 (Schill Moor)
peak between Saughieside Hill and Black Hag 5281,732 NT868241 55°30′30″N2°12′35″W / 55.50833°N 2.20972°W / 55.50833; -2.20972 (Saughieside Hill, Black Hag)
Ravens Knowe 5271,729 NT780062 55°21′00″N2°20′45″W / 55.35000°N 2.34583°W / 55.35000; -2.34583 (Ravens Knowe)
Peak near Harden Edge Nuvola apps important.svg 5271,729 NT786073 55°21′30″N2°20′20″W / 55.35833°N 2.33889°W / 55.35833; -2.33889 (Horten Edge)
Preston Hill 5261,726 NT923238 55°30′25″N2°07′20″W / 55.50694°N 2.12222°W / 55.50694; -2.12222 (Preston Hill)
Scrathy Holes 5211,709 NT638031 55°19′15″N2°34′10″W / 55.32083°N 2.56944°W / 55.32083; -2.56944 (Scrathy Holes)
Newton Tors: Wester Tor5181,699 NT907273 55°32′50″N2°08′40″W / 55.54722°N 2.14444°W / 55.54722; -2.14444 (Newton Tors)
Newton Tors: Hare Law5181,699 NT902265 55°31′50″N2°09′00″W / 55.53056°N 2.15000°W / 55.53056; -2.15000 (Newton Tors: Hare Law)
Broadhope Hill 5171,696 NT933234 55°30′15″N2°06′20″W / 55.50417°N 2.10556°W / 55.50417; -2.10556 (Broadhope Hill)
Grey Mares Knowe 5161,693 NT666003 55°17′40″N2°31′30″W / 55.29444°N 2.52500°W / 55.29444; -2.52500 (Grey Mares Knowe)
Ogre Hill 5161,693 NT777069 55°21′20″N2°21′10″W / 55.35556°N 2.35278°W / 55.35556; -2.35278 (Ogre Hill)
Lamb Hill 5111,677 NT811133 55°24′45″N2°18′00″W / 55.41250°N 2.30000°W / 55.41250; -2.30000 (Lamb Hill)
Outer Golden Pot Nuvola apps important.svg 5051,657 NT802072 55°21′30″N2°18′45″W / 55.35833°N 2.31250°W / 55.35833; -2.31250 (Outer Golden Pot)
Shillhope Law 5011,644 NT873097 55°22′50″N2°12′00″W / 55.38056°N 2.20000°W / 55.38056; -2.20000 (Shillhope Law)
Map all coordinates using: OpenStreetMap  
Download coordinates as: KML

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Byrness Human settlement in England

Byrness is a village within Rochester civil parish in Northumberland, England. It is approximately 37 miles (60 km) north-west of Newcastle upon Tyne on the A68, and is the last village in England before the A68 climbs the Cheviot Hills to cross Carter Bar into Scotland. Byrness's village church features a stained-glass window commemorating the workers who died during the building of Catcleugh Reservoir nearby. Much of the village was built by the Forestry Commission to house workers for the extensive forests that surround it. Situated on the Pennine Way, Byrness has an inn, campsite and other accommodation offering rest and sustenance for weary walkers.

Windy Gyle

Windy Gyle is a mountain in the Cheviot Hills range, on the border between England and Scotland. Like the other hills in the area, it is rounded and grass-covered. It is the highest summit on the border, although not the highest point as the border is higher where it runs along the western shoulder of The Cheviot, at a point called Cairn Hill West Top, or Hangingstone Hill. The cairn at the summit of this hill is named Russell's Cairn and has a small depression suitable for shielding about 15 people from the wind; the border runs directly through the cairn although this can only be seen on the map, the fence which follows it in many places is absent here. The Pennine Way crosses the summit, thus providing one possible route of ascent. Windy Gyle may also be climbed from the Coquet valley to the south (England), or from Cocklawfoot to the north (Scotland). There are good views from the summit north towards the Scottish Borders, Eildon Hills and Edinburgh and south across the southern Cheviot Hills to the North Pennines.

Carter Bar is a point on the England–Scotland border, in the Scottish Borders and Northumberland.

Hedgehope Hill

Hedgehope Hill is a mountain in the Cheviot Hills of north Northumberland in northeast England, and categorised as a Hewitt.

Anglo-Scottish border 96-mile long border between England and Scotland

The Anglo-Scottish border is a border separating Scotland and England which runs for 96 miles (154 km) between Marshall Meadows Bay on the east coast and the Solway Firth in the west. The surrounding area is sometimes referred to as "the Borderlands".

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The mountains and hills of England comprise very different kinds of terrain, from a mountain range which reaches almost 1,000 metres high, to several smaller areas of lower mountains, foothills and sea cliffs. Most of the major upland areas have been designated as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) or national parks. The highest and most extensive areas are in the north and west, while the midlands, south-east and east of the country tend to be low-lying.

Shillhope Law

Shillhope Law is a hill in the southern Cheviots, a range of hills in Northumberland, England. Shillhope Law is a relatively unremarkable member of this group; in common with its neighbours it has a small summit and steep, grassy sides falling to deeply incised valleys on either side. However, unlike its neighbours, the ridge connecting Shillhope Law to the higher dome of The Cheviot to the north is bisected by a low col at 343 metres (1,125 ft) m, giving it enough relative height to be a Marilyn.

Breamish River in Northumberland, England

The Breamish is a river in Northumberland, England, which rises on Comb Fell in the Northumberland National Park on the southern side of The Cheviot. It is one of the eight rivers rising in the Cheviot Hills, the others being the College Valley, the Harthope Burn, the Bowmont Water, the Kale Water, the Heatherhope Burn, the Coquet and the Alwin.

Otterburn Training Area

The Otterburn Army Training Estate (ATE) is a military training area near Otterburn, Northumberland, in northern England. It is owned by the UK's Ministry of Defence (MoD) and operated by Landmarc on contract from the MoD's Defence Infrastructure Organisation. The range and is used for training up to 30,000 soldiers per year. The site was established in 1911 and covers about 242 square kilometres (93 sq mi) of the southern Cheviot Hills.

Usway Burn

The Usway Burn is an upland river on the southern flanks of the Cheviot Hills, in the Northumberland National Park, England.

The geology of Northumberland in northeast England includes a mix of sedimentary, intrusive and extrusive igneous rocks from the Palaeozoic and Cenozoic eras. Devonian age volcanic rocks and a granite pluton form the Cheviot massif. The geology of the rest of the county is characterised largely by a thick sequence of sedimentary rocks of Carboniferous age. These are intruded by both Permian and Palaeogene dykes and sills and the whole is overlain by unconsolidated sediments from the last ice age and the post-glacial period. The Whin Sill makes a significant impact on Northumberland's character and the former working of the Northumberland Coalfield significantly influenced the development of the county's economy. The county's geology contributes to a series of significant landscape features around which the Northumberland National Park was designated.

The geology of Northumberland National Park in northeast England includes a mix of sedimentary, intrusive and extrusive igneous rocks from the Palaeozoic and Cenozoic eras. Devonian age volcanic rocks and a granite pluton form the Cheviot massif. The geology of the rest of the national park is characterised largely by a thick sequence of sedimentary rocks of Carboniferous age. These are intruded by Permian dykes and sills, of which the Whin Sill makes a significant impact in the south of the park. Further dykes were intruded during the Palaeogene period. The whole is overlain by unconsolidated sediments from the last ice age and the post-glacial period.

References

  1. "The Cheviots". My Pennines. My Pennines. Retrieved 25 October 2016.
  2. Ogilvie, Alan Grant (1930). "Great Britain: Essays in Regional Geography". Google Books. Retrieved 25 October 2016.
  3. "Geology of Britain". British Geological Survey. British Geological Survey. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  4. 1 2 The topology and climate of Northumberland National Park Archived July 21, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  5. "Natural England". Archived from the original on 2013-12-03.
  6. England, Natural. "NCA Profile: 03 Cheviot Fringe - NE438". Natural England - Access to Evidence.
  7. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 Staff. "Walking Routes". northumberlandnationalpark.org.uk. nnpa.org.uk. Retrieved 8 August 2020.
  8. 1 2 Staff. "Three Forts Foray". northumberlandnationalpark.org.uk. nnpa.org.uk. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  9. 1 2 Staff. "Hethpool to the Curr". northumberlandnationalpark.org.uk. nnpa.org.uk. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  10. Otterburn Public Information Leaflet pdf. hsmt.info
  11. Nicholas Schoon (26 April 1997) Travel: Tanks for the wildlife. The Independent
  12. Northumberland National Park – Otterburn Ranges. northumberlandnationalpark.org.uk