Group of barrows in Seven Barrow Plantation

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1002812

Date first listed: 27-Mar-1958

Map

Ordnance survey map of Group of barrows in Seven Barrow Plantation
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Dorset

District: West Dorset (District Authority)

Parish: Bradford Peverell

National Grid Reference: SY 64610 92179, SY 64713 92343, SY 64724 92393, SY 64742 92474, SY 64744 92457, SY 64749 92418, SY 64763 92479, SY 64764 92558, SY 64798 92472, SY 64803 92508

Summary

Three long barrows and twelve bowl barrows forming a round barrow cemetery.

Reasons for Designation

Long barrows were constructed as earthen or drystone mounds with flanking ditches and acted as funerary monuments during the Early and Middle Neolithic periods (3400-2400 BC). They represent the burial places of Britain's early farming communities and, as such, are amongst the oldest field monuments surviving visibly in the present landscape. Where investigated, long barrows appear to have been used for communal burial, often with only parts of the human remains having been selected for interment. Certain sites provide evidence for several phases of funerary monument preceding the barrow and, consequently, it is probable that long barrows acted as important ritual sites for local communities over a considerable period of time. Some 500 examples of long barrows and long cairns, their counterparts in the uplands, are recorded nationally. As one of the few types of Neolithic structure to survive as earthworks, and due to their comparative rarity, their considerable age and their longevity as a monument type, all long barrows are considered to be nationally important. Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They comprise closely-spaced groups of up to 30 round barrows - rubble or earthen mounds covering single or multiple burials. Most cemeteries developed over a considerable period of time, often many centuries, and in some cases acted as a focus for burials as late as the early medieval period. They exhibit considerable diversity of burial rite, plan and form, frequently including several different types of round barrow, occasionally associated with earlier long barrows. Where large scale investigation has been undertaken around them, contemporary or later "flat" burials between the barrow mounds have often been revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland Britain, with a marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases, they are clustered around other important contemporary monuments such as henges. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape, whilst their diversity and their longevity as a monument type provide important information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period. Despite some scrub growth and animal burrowing the three long barrows and twelve bowl barrows forming a round barrow cemetery 340m north west of Stables Farm survive comparatively well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to their construction, relative chronologies, territorial significance, social organisation, ritual and funerary practices and overall landscape context.

History

See Details.

Details

This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 11 January 2016. This record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

This monument, which falls into ten areas, includes three long barrows and a round barrow cemetery situated on the summit of the prominent Penn Hill overlooking the valley of the River Frome. The long barrows survive as rectangular mounds with partially buried side ditches. The mounds range in size from 18.5m up to 50m long, from 8m up to 12m wide and from 0.9m up to 1.3m high. Two have at least one visible side ditch of up to 4m wide and 0.2m deep. The round barrow cemetery includes twelve bowl barrows surviving as circular mounds surrounded by buried quarry ditches from which the construction material was derived. Only one has a visible ditch of up to 2m wide and 0.1m deep. The mounds vary in size from 11m up to 20m in diameter and from 0.3 up to 2.5m high. At least one abuts a long mound and two are cut by tracks.

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: DO 349

Legacy System: RSM - OCN

Sources

Other
PastScape Monument No:-453786 and 453739

End of official listing