Pond barrow on the western margin of Durrington Down Plantation
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1009128
Date first listed: 23-Mar-1995
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This copy shows the entry on 22-Feb-2019 at 18:08:55.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference: SU 11639 44159
Reasons for Designation
A small number of areas in southern England appear to have acted as foci for
ceremonial and ritual activity during the Neolithic and Bronze Age periods.
Two of the best known and the earliest recognised areas are around Avebury and
Stonehenge, now jointly designated as a World Heritage Site.
The area of chalk downland which surrounds Stonehenge contains one of the
densest and most varied groups of Neolithic and Bronze Age field monuments in
Britain. Included within the area are Stonehenge itself, the Stonehenge
cursus, the Durrington Walls henge, and a variety of burial monuments, many
grouped into cemeteries.
The area has been the subject of archaeological research since the 18th
century when Stukeley recorded many of the monuments and partially excavated a
number of the burial mounds. More recently, the collection of artefacts from
the surfaces of ploughed fields has supplemented the evidence for ritual and
burial by revealing the intensity of contemporary settlement and land-use.
In view of the importance of the area, all ceremonial and sepulchral monuments
of this period which retain significant archaeological remains are identified
as nationally important.
Pond barrows are ceremonial or funerary monuments of the Early to Middle Bronze Age, most examples dating to between 1500 and 1000 BC. The term `barrow' is something of a misnomer as, rather than a mound, they were constructed as regular circular depressions with an embanked rim and, occasionally an outer ditch or an entrance through the bank. Pond barrows occur either in isolation or within round barrow cemeteries. Pond barrows are the rarest form of round barrow, with about 60 examples recorded nationally and a distribution largely confined to Wiltshire and Dorset, many of which are in the Stonehenge area. As few examples have been excavated, they have a particularly high value for future study. Due to their rarity, all identified pond barrows will normally be considered to be of national importance.
Despite having been disturbed by forestry and the construction of a track, the pond barrow on the western margin of Durrington Down Plantation survives in the form of buried remains in addition to the visible section of bank. It will contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed.
The monument includes a pond barrow located 250m south of The Packway on the
western edge of Durrington Down Plantation. The diameter of the pond is 20.5m
and is now 0.2m deep. The bank is 0.1m high and 2m wide, and most obvious on
the east side.
The west bank of the monument is masked by the adjacent metalled track which
is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath 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.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: 10398
Legacy System: RSM
Books and journals
Grinsell, LV, The Victoria History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume V, (1957), 225
Hoare, R C, Ancient History of Wiltshire, (1812), 171
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