Long cairn 360m south west of Dour Hill


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1009379

Date first listed: 17-Jan-1995


Ordnance survey map of Long cairn 360m south west of Dour Hill
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This copy shows the entry on 17-Dec-2018 at 09:22:01.


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

District: Northumberland (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Rochester


National Grid Reference: NT 79235 02122


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

Reasons for Designation

Long cairns were constructed as elongated rubble mounds and acted as funerary monuments during the Early and Middle Neolithic periods (c.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 cairns appear to have been used for communal burial, often with only parts of the human remains having been selected for interment. Long cairns sometimes display evidence of internal structural arrangements, including stone-lined compartments and tomb chambers constructed from massive slabs. Some examples also show edge-set kerb stones bounding parts of the cairn perimeter. Certain sites provide evidence for several phases of funeral activity preceding construction of the cairn, and consequently it is probable that long cairns acted as important ritual sites for local communities over a considerable period of time. Some 500 examples of long cairns and long barrows, their counterparts in central and eastern England, are recorded nationally. As one of the few types of Neolithic structure to survive as a visible monument and due to their comparative rarity, their considerable age and their longevity as a monument type, all positively identified long cairns are considered to be nationally important.

Dour Hill long cairn is one of few surviving long cairns in Northumberland. It survives well and will add to our understanding of Neolithic settlement and activity in the region.


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


The monument includes the remains of a long cairn of Neolithic date situated on the west slope of Dour Hill commanding extensive views into the valley of the Rede. The cairn, orientated north west to south east, is 50m long and 8.5m wide and stands to a maximum height of 2m. A Bronze Age cist, a form of stone coffin which was clearly a later insertion, is situated 6m from the southern end of the cairn and measures 1.2m by 0.6m. This cist was excavated in the 1930s and a flint tool was recovered.

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: 25098

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Miket, R, Burgess, C (eds), Between and Beyond the Walls, (1984), 65-6
Hewat Craw, J, 'Hist Berwick Natur Club 27 pt 3' in , (1931), 329
Punshaw, G, Miller, J E, 'Proc Soc Antiq Ncle 4 ser 6' in Proc Soc Antiq Ncle 4 ser 6, (1934), 40-41

End of official listing