A bowl barrow on Birdsall Wold, 250m north-west of Vessey Pasture Farm

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1007571

Date first listed: 17-Jan-1994

Map

Ordnance survey map of A bowl barrow on Birdsall Wold, 250m north-west of Vessey Pasture Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1007571 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 22-Oct-2018 at 09:19:47.

Location

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

County: North Yorkshire

District: Ryedale (District Authority)

Parish: Birdsall

National Grid Reference: SE 82389 62907

Summary

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

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 and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

Although the barrow has been partially altered by agricultural activity, it was comparatively well documented during a campaign of fieldwork in the 19th century and below-ground remains will survive. The monument is one of a closely associated group of barrows which have further associations with broadly contemporary boundary earthworks on Birdsall Wold. Similar groups of monuments are also known from other parts of the Wolds and from the southern edge of the North York Moors. Such associations between monuments offer important scope for the study of the division of land for social, ritual and agricultural purposes in different geographical areas during the prehistoric period.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The monument includes a bowl barrow situated on the crest of Birdsall Wold, near the head of Vessey Pasture Dale. The barrow is one of a number of prehistoric monuments on Birdsall Wold. Although altered over the years by agricultural activity, the barrow is still visible as a slight mound 0.3m high and 22m in diameter and a circular ditch, 17m in diameter, from which material was quarried for the construction of the mound, has been observed on aerial photographs. The ditch has become infilled over the years and now lies beneath the edge of the mound, which has been spread slightly by ploughing. The barrow was recorded and partially excavated by J R Mortimer in 1868. A central cremated burial, accompanied by several fragments of bronze weapons, was found and the encircling ditch was recorded as being 2.5m wide by 1m deep.

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: 20488

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Mortimer, J R , Forty Years Researches in British and Saxon Burial Mounds of East Yorkshire, (1905)
Other
Stoetz, K., RCHME unpublished survey,

End of official listing