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Long barrow and part of a round barrow cemetery 130m SSE of Freshwater Bay Golf Clubhouse, on Afton Down

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Long barrow and part of a round barrow cemetery 130m SSE of Freshwater Bay Golf Clubhouse, on Afton Down

List entry Number: 1007789

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County:

District: Isle of Wight

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: Freshwater

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 23-Jul-1934

Date of most recent amendment: 11-Jul-1994

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 21996

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

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 long barrows are recorded in England. 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.



Despite disturbance caused during landscaping of the golf course, the long barrow on Afton Down is one of only three long barrows known on the Isle of Wight. In the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC), this barrow acted as the focus for a round barrow cemetery. Round barrow cemeteries are 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.

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 the fact that the majority of the barrows are disturbed and four of the ten have been partially excavated, the long barrow and round barrow cemetery on Afton Down have survived well and will contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed. This barrow cemetery is one of two which survive on this part of the coast of the south western side of the Isle of Wight, and is the only one on the island to have developed around an earlier long barrow.

History

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

Details

The monument includes a long barrow and part of a round barrow cemetery comprising one disc barrow, one bell barrow and seven bowl barrows. This part of the barrow cemetery lies on the coast on a west facing slope which continues down to a cove on the south western part of the Isle of Wight. At the top end of the slope there are views to the Solent and beyond.

The long barrow and disc barrow lie towards the west end of the group and the bell barrow lies in the centre of the group. The long barrow has a mound which measures 38m long and 10.5m wide. It stands to a height of 1.2m. Along each side of the long axis of the barrow are side ditches from which material was quarried during its construction. The southern ditch can no longer be seen at ground level but survives as a buried feature; the northern ditch is visible as a slight earthwork 6m wide.

The disc barrow has a central mound 10m in diameter and 0.5m high. Beyond this is a berm 4m wide and around this is a ditch 4m wide and 0.75m deep. Surrounding the ditch is an outer bank 5m wide and 0.5m high.

The bell barrow has a mound which measures 12.5m east-west and 10m north-south and is 1.2m high. Beyond the mound is a berm 3m wide surrounded by a ditch 7.5m wide and c.1m deep.

Around and between these three barrows are seven bowl barrows. These barrows have mounds which vary in diameter from 8.5m to 19m and are from 0.5m to 2m high. Surrounding each bowl barrow mound is a ditch from which material was quarried during its construction. Many of these ditches have become infilled over the years, but survive as buried features up to 3m wide. Some of the ditches have become partly infilled over the years and survive as depressions up to 4m wide and 0.1m deep.

Almost all the barrows are disturbed and a number were opened in 1817 by the Rev J Skinner. In two of the bowl barrows he found cremations in urns. The wooden steps and gravel risers associated with the golf course are excluded from the scheduling, but the ground around and beneath them is included. The wooden notice boards and signs are excluded from the scheduling, but the ground beneath is included.

The MOD observation post comprising concrete bunker and metal pipes set into one of the barrows is excluded from the scheduling, but 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.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Basford, H V, The Vectis Report: A Survey of Isle of Wight Archaeology, (1980), 108
'Proceeding of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 1, (1929), 656
'Proceeding of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 1, (1929), 656
'Proceeding of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 1, (1929), 656
'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 3, (1940), 196-7
'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 3, (1940), 195-7
'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 3, (1940), 195-7
'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 3, (1940), 195-7
'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 3, (1940), 195-7
'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 3, (1940), 195-7
'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 3, (1940), 180-197
'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Society, , Vol. 3, (1940), 195-7
Other
Title: O.S. card 38 NE 14 Source Date: Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

National Grid Reference: SZ 35243 85745

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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End of official listing