Neolithic long barrow 400m SSE of Burnt Hill


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Date of most recent amendment:


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

West Oxfordshire (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SP 26597 28500

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 examples of long barrows and long cairns, their counterparts in the uplands, are recorded nationally. 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.

The long barrow 400m SSE of Burnt Hill survives as a visible earthwork despite having been partially levelled by ploughing and it will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction and the landscape in which it was built. The monument is also situated close to a portal dolmen, a rare form of Early Neolithic burial chamber which precedes the development of long barrows.


The monument includes the remains of a Neolithic long barrow situated on a south east facing slope, 400m SSE of Burnt Hill. The barrow mound has been reduced by cultivation at both its north eastern and south western ends but survives well on its southern side within a clump of mature trees which stand on the centre of the mound. The overall dimensions of the mound are 54m long and up to 12m wide. The barrow stands up to 1m high within the trees while elsewhere it is still visible as a slight rise up to 0.4m high. South of the mound, the flanking quarry ditch, which has been infilled over the years, can be seen as a slight depression c.6m wide beyond a 3.8m wide berm. The line of this ditch can also be traced to the south west by a differential growth in the arable crop. The northern ditch has become infilled and has also been the site of stone dumping. However, it will survive below ground as a buried feature with dimensions similar to that on the southern side. The stones dumped to the north of the copse and scattered across the site represent stones removed from the adjacent field in recent times, and also represent some of the stones which originally flanked the sides of the barrow, possibly forming a burial chamber within the mound. A low circular bank, 15m in diameter and c.0.2m high, lies in the centre of the clump, on top of the long barrow. This represents a later change in the use of the site. The monument was first identified in 1922 when a number of the stones were still upright within the clump of trees. The long barrow lies 150m south west of a portal dolmen.

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.


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

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Books and journals
Crawford, O G S, Long Barrows of the Cotswolds, (1925), p 175
Benson, , Fasham, , 'Fieldwork at Chastleton' in Site E Plans And Profiles, , Vol. XXXVII, (1972), p 8
OCN 159, ENGLISH HERITAGE, Bronze Age stone circle SSE of Burnt Hill, (1976)
PRN 1470, note 3, C.A.O., ? Tumulus (remains of), (1972)
PRN 2626, C.A.O., Round Barrow?, (1976)
Title: Rec 6' Source Date: 1922 Author: Publisher: Surveyor: Hand drawn map


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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