Four bowl barrows 400m north east of the radar station: part of a round barrow cemetery on Luccombe Down


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010007

Date first listed: 23-Jun-1967

Date of most recent amendment: 16-Mar-1995


Ordnance survey map of Four bowl barrows 400m north east of the radar station: part of a round barrow cemetery on Luccombe Down
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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 - 1010007 .pdf

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

District: Isle of Wight (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Wroxall

National Grid Reference: SZ 57300 78794


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

Reasons for Designation

Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They comprise 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, occasionally associated with earlier long barrows. 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 some having been partially excavated in the past, the four bowl barrows north east of the radar station are integral to the Luccombe Down cemetery and will contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the cemetery and the landscape in which it was constructed.


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


The monument includes four bowl barrows situated on a north-south orientated ridge on the south east coast of the Isle of Wight. This group of four barrows lies on the highest point of the ridge and forms part of a wider cemetery which includes eleven barrows. The barrows, starting with the most southerly, have mounds which measure 10m, 15m, 19m, and 25m in diameter and are c.0.8m, 0.8m, 1.6m and 1.75m high. Surrounding each mound is a ditch from which material was quarried during its construction. These ditches have become infilled over the years and can no longer be seen at ground level, but survive as buried features ranging from 2m to 5m wide. Of the eleven round barrows on Luccombe Down, ten, including three in this group, have central depressions indicative of previous excavation; five of the eleven barrows are known to have been excavated in 1855. Records of the other excavations are unknown. The barrows excavated in 1855 contained interments in baked clay urns surrounded by large flints.

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: 22023

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Whitehead, J C, Undercliff of the Isle of Wight, (1911), 20

End of official listing