Barrow cemetery 1/4 mile (400m) NE of Bretford


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


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

Rugby (District Authority)
Brandon and Bretford
Rugby (District Authority)
King's Newnham
National Grid Reference:
SP 43516 77116, SP 43571 77410


Round barrow cemetery 190m east of Willow Farm Stables.

Reasons for Designation

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 and a substantial proportion of surviving or partly-surviving examples are considered worthy of protection. Despite cultivation the round barrow cemetery 190m east of Willow Farm Stables survives comparatively well and will retain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, development, the relative chronologies of individual barrows, territorial significance, social organisation, funerary and ritual practices, longevity and overall landscape context of the cemetery.


See Details.


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 3 June 2015. 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. As such they do not yet have the full descriptions of their modernised counterparts available. Please contact us if you would like further information.

This monument, which falls into two areas, includes a round barrow cemetery situated on a relatively level area between two tributaries and overlooking the River Avon. The cemetery survives as entirely buried structures, layers and deposits visible on aerial photographs as crop and soil marks and includes at least six circular ring ditches of between 20 to 50m in diameter. Some of the barrows are depicted by double concentric ring ditches, some have internal features and at least two are located within a larger elongated enclosure identified by some as a possible cursus or cremation cemetery. Partial excavations in 1968 and 1989-90 found that the largest ring ditch had been re-cut at least once and produced finds of Mesolithic, Neolithic and Bronze Age date other examples produced urns and cremations. The ring ditches were identified by the excavators in 1968 as being small henges but the later excavations confirmed the interpretation as burial barrows was most likely. There are 19th century references to a cremation, glass bead and urns having originated from these barrows.


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

Legacy System number:
WA 163
Legacy System:


PastScape 337571
Warwickshire HER 3455


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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