Steep Hill

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Steep Hill
Steep Hill.jpg
View up 'Steep Hill' towards the historic quarter of Bailgate
Former name(s)Ermine Street, Iter VI of the Antonine Itinerary
Maintained byLincolnshire County Council
Length420 m[1] (1,380 ft)
LocationLincoln, England
Postal codeLN2 1LU
Coordinates53°13′58″N 0°32′18″W / 53.232684°N 0.538439°W / 53.232684; -0.538439 (Steep Hill, Lincoln)Coordinates: 53°13′58″N 0°32′18″W / 53.232684°N 0.538439°W / 53.232684; -0.538439 (Steep Hill, Lincoln)
Uphill endBailgate
53°13′59″N 0°32′19″W / 53.233062°N 0.538486°W / 53.233062; -0.538486 (Steep Hill, Lincoln (uphill))
Well Lane, Wordsworth Street, Michaelgate, Christ's Hospital Terrace
Downhill endDanes Terrace, The Strait
53°13′56″N 0°32′19″W / 53.232084°N 0.538609°W / 53.232084; -0.538609 (Steep Hill, Lincoln (downhill))
CommissionedRoman Empire
Construction start1st Century

Steep Hill is a popular tourist street in the historic city of Lincoln, Lincolnshire, England. At the top of the hill is the entrance to Lincoln Cathedral and at the bottom is Well Lane. The Hill consists of independent shops, tea rooms and pubs.

In 2011, Steep Hill was named "Britain's Best Place" by the Academy of Urbanism.[2][3]


Its name arises from the gradient of the hill, which is difficult to ascend and descend. The hill has a one in seven (14%) gradient.[4]


Steepest part of the hill with a handrail.

The bottom leads to The Strait. Three-quarters of the way up is the junction with Wordsworth Street, on which is Chad Varah House, the home of the Departments of Conservation & Restoration and History of Art & Design of the University of Lincoln. From this junction, the road narrows and leads past the Wig & Mitre pub and Brown's Pie Shop and to Castle Hill to the left and Exchequergate to the right.

The central (and steepest) part of the route is unsuited to any form of vehicle, and only passable on foot. A handrail is provided along this section. The route is part of the Roman route from the ford over the River Witham to the Forum in modern Bailgate, and thus the final part of Ermine Street and Iter VI of the Antonine Itinerary.[5]


Two Norman houses lie on the street, Jew's House and Norman House, the latter formerly known as "Aaron the Jew's House". Both display characteristic Norman mullioned windows. Adjacent to and above the Jew's House stands Jew's Court, said to be from the Norman period but not displaying any obvious Norman features. There are some jettied half-timbered houses towards the top.


  1. ^ "Google maps walking route". Retrieved 17 February 2011.
  2. ^ "Steep Hill in Lincoln wins best place award". BBC News Online. 12 November 2011.
  3. ^ "The Academy of Urbanism".
  4. ^ "Lincoln Steep Hill bus gets 11th hour rescue". BBC. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  5. ^ "Private web site for Antonine Itinerary". Retrieved 17 February 2011. (quoting Parthey and Pinder, ed. (1848). Iter Britanniarum. Berlin.)