Two bowl barrows on North Molton Ridge 620m and 720m west of Twitchen Ball Corner


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


© Crown Copyright and database right 2021. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.
North Devon (District Authority)
North Molton
National Park:
National Grid Reference:
SS 77844 32538, SS 77967 32457

Reasons for Designation

Bowl barrows, the most numerous form of round barrow, are funerary monuments dating from the Late Neolithic period to the Late Bronze Age, with most examples belonging to the period 2400-1500 BC. They were constructed as earthen or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Often superficially similar, although differing widely in size, they exhibit regional variations in form and a diversity of burial practices. There are over 10,000 surviving bowl barrows recorded nationally (many more have already been destroyed), occurring across most of lowland Britain. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable variation of form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisations amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period. Despite partial excavation, and some modification the barrows on North Molton Ridge survive comparatively well and will contain important archaeological and environmental evidence relating to their construction, use, later reuse and landscape context.


This monument includes two bowl barrows, one with a later encircling bank, situated on the summit of North Molton Ridge, overlooking the valleys of the River Mole and Sherdon Water. The southern barrow survives as an oval flat-topped mound measuring up to 21.5m long by 19.5m wide and 1m high. The surrounding quarry ditch, from which material to construct the mound was derived, is preserved as a buried feature. Encircling the mound and 7.6m from its base is a later 1.1m high outer bank with external ditch. This feature relates to either the Elizabethan reuse of the barrow as a beacon or as a result of 18th century tree planting. An Ordnance Survey triangulation pillar has been placed on the summit of the barrow mound. The northern barrow survives as a flat-topped circular mound measuring up to 19.2m in diameter and 0.5m high. The partially buried surrounding quarry ditch measures up to 1m wide and 0.2m deep. This barrow was partially excavated in 1917 and finds included an urn, flint implements and a necklace of faience beads. The triangulation pillar is excluded from the scheduling but the ground beneath this feature is included.

Sources: HER:- NMR:-SS 73 SE 1 PastScape Monument No:-35068


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

Legacy System number:
DV 247
Legacy System:


This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

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