Ring cairn on Knipescar Common

Overview

Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
1007407
Date first listed:
19-Jan-1965
Date of most recent amendment:
19-Oct-1993

Map

Ordnance survey map of Ring cairn on Knipescar Common
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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Location

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

County:
Cumbria
District:
Eden (District Authority)
Parish:
Bampton
National Park:
LAKE DISTRICT
National Grid Reference:
NY 52882 19303

Reasons for Designation

A ring cairn is a prehistoric ritual monument comprising a circular bank of stones up to 20m in diameter surrounding a hollow central area. The bank may be kerbed on the inside, and sometimes on the outside as well, with small uprights or laid boulders. Ring cairns are found mainly in upland areas of England and are mostly discovered and authenticated by fieldwork and ground level survey, although a few are large enough to be visible on aerial photographs. They often occur in pairs or small groups of up to four examples. Occasionally they lie within round barrow cemeteries. Ring cairns are interpreted as ritual monuments of Early and Middle Bronze Age date. The exact nature of the rituals concerned is not fully understood, but excavation has revealed pits, some containing burials and others containing charcoal and pottery, taken to indicate feasting activities associated with the burial rituals. Many areas of upland have not yet been surveyed in detail and the number of ring cairns in England is not accurately known. However, available evidence indicates a population of between 250 and 500 examples. As a relatively rare class of monument exhibiting considerable variation in form, all positively identified examples retaining significant archaeological deposits are considered worthy of preservation.

The ring cairn on Knipescar Common survives well. It is unexcavated and will retain undisturbed archaeological deposits within the enclosure bank and interior.

Details

The monument is a ring cairn located on a limestone shelf on Knipescar Common. It includes a ring bank of limestone boulders and rubble up to 2.5m wide and 0.9m high that encloses an oval internal area measuring c.15m by 11m. There is a limestone block at the centre of the ring cairn and other blocks are scattered in the south-west and north-west quadrants. A wooden post that held an information board is excluded from the scheduling although, the ground beneath it is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number:
22510
Legacy System:
RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Waterhouse, J, The Stones Circles of Cumbria, (1986), 154
Other
Darvill, T., MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Ring Cairns, (1989)
RCHME, Westmorland, (1936)

Legal

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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