List of names as written Various modes of spelling Authorities for spelling Situation Description remarks
HABCHESTER 012.09 Continued
itself to the eye is round Camp of Drumaw or Habchester, on the highest point of the southern extremity. now half-ploughed down and reduced to the form of a semi circle -- Some modern antiquarians have lamented that so perfect a specimen of the ancient British encampments has not escaped the mutilation of the plough, especially as no ancient relicts have been discovered by the process of plowing at dawn, to compensate for the deed --
Enough however remains to mark the judgement and the industry with which such places had been selected & constructed, both with a view to observation and defence - Situated on the highest elevation of a lofty eminence, & commanding a most extensive prospect both of sea & land, no spot could be better chosen for watching the movements of an enemy; and formed of two concentric mounds with a deep trench. between, and another outside, it was capable of making a rigorous resistance - As it stands on the northern side of the hill, it is probable that it was constructed by south Britons. to repel the assaults of their northern neighbours; at all events, it was not constructed by the Romans, as has been erroneously conjectured. for its form is circular -- Near this spot must have passed the Roman road, which extended from the wall of Severus (which crosses the country as Newcastle, to the Roman Camp in the vicinity of St Abb's Head, where it terminated -- This road also must have passed close to the rising ground, on which has since stood. & since disappeared, the Castle of Ayton, & which is now the site of Ayton house -- Possibly the situations both of the Camp & of the Castle were chosen, in part at least, on account of their contiguity to the Roman road. for long subsequently to the retiring of the Romans it would be the best, if not the only great. thoroughfare of the Country -- Cairnchester, another Camp hard by -- of which there are now no Vestiges but the name. & Chesterdale & Chesterbank that this hill had been often selected for encampments on account of the fitness of its locality for that purpose - These however, in process of time gave place to castles, of which there are many remains in all the border counties, and which proved stronger & more permanent places of defence than Camps"

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[page] 81
Parish of Ayton

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