High Thorn under Will’s Hut passing Harlow Bush to the tank road. South passing Robin Hood’s Butts to Sandy Slack Head, west at Elm Ledge crossing Black Beck Swang peat pits to Siss Cross Road.
..the last earth fort
Born waiting to die
Viewshed sunwise – Gerrick Moor – Elm Ledge – Beacon Hill – Glaisdale Rigg – Great Fryup Dale – Heads – Danby High Moor – Danby Rigg – Ainthorpe Rigg – Danby Dale – Castleton Rigg – Westerdale Moor – Kempswithen – Kildale Moor – Haw Rigg – High Moor – Siss Cross Hill
Lilla Cross stands on Lilla Howe, a Bronze Age burial mound. The cross is said to commemorate Lilla, who according to Bede was one of King Edwin of Northumbria’s thegns who died in AD626 saving Edwin from an assassins knife. It is unlikely that the cross commemorates Bede’s Lilla as the cross was erected at least two centuries after his death. The mound was excavated in 1920 and pieces of Anglo-Danish jewellery were found.
The cross and mound have a significance in the landscape of this part of the moors. They form a boundary marker for the lands of the abbey at Whitby, the boundary of four medieval parishes and a waymarker for two medieval packhorse roads.
Botton Cross overlooks the head of Danby Dale presumably on an old trackway from Eskdale to Rosedale. In his 1993 booklet, The Crosses of the North York Moors, Lewis Graham remarks that it may be of interest to lay hunters that Botton, Fat Betty and Old Ralph are in a perfect east-west line though Young Ralph is to the north.
The original word in Icelandic botn, and it is applied to the head of a bay, lake, dale or the like, the compound word dals-botn being a word of actual occurrence. Moreover, Vigfussen remarks that “Botn” is a local name still in Iceland.
JC Atkinson. Forty Years in a Moorland Parish. 1891