Bowl barrow on summit of Musden Low


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010383

Date first listed: 17-Jan-1966

Date of most recent amendment: 18-Sep-1992


Ordnance survey map of Bowl barrow on summit of Musden Low
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This copy shows the entry on 12-Dec-2018 at 17:25:11.


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

County: Staffordshire

District: Staffordshire Moorlands (District Authority)

Parish: Waterhouses

National Park: PEAK DISTRICT

National Grid Reference: SK 11842 50080


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

Reasons for Designation

Bowl barrows, the most numerous form of round barrow, are funerary monuments dating from the Late Neolithic period to the Late Bronze Age, with most examples belonging to the period 2400-1500 BC. They were constructed as earthen or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Often superficially similar, although differing widely in size, they exhibit regional variations in form and a diversity of burial practices. There are over 10,000 surviving bowl barrows recorded nationally (many more have already been destroyed), occurring across most of lowland Britain. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable variation of form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisations amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

Despite partial loss of the monument due to quarrying and limited antiquarian investigations at the barrow's centre, the bowl barrow on Musden Hill survives relatively well. These investigations located human remains, flint artefacts and pottery, and further similar evidence of interments and grave goods will exist within the mound and upon the old landsurface. Additionally, the monument is a rare example in the Peak District of a barrow displaying re-use during Romano-British times.


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


The monument includes a bowl barrow located on the summit of Musden Low. It survives as a sub-circular flat-topped mound up to 1.5m high. Part of the southeastern side of the mound has been removed by quarrying leaving the surviving portion of the barrow measuring 30m northeast-southwest by 16m northwest-southeast. The centre of the barrow contains a low mound 3.5m diameter by 0.3m high and surrounded by a shallow ditch that was the site of a triangulation pillar. This pillar has now been relocated adjacent to the north western side of the barrow. Limited antiquarian investigations at the monument's centre located an inhumation, a cremation, a cist containing a cremation, human bones, fused lead, flint artefacts, and pottery sherds ranging in date from Prehistoric to Romano-British. The triangulation pillar 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.


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

Legacy System number: 13550

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Barnatt, J, The Peak District Barrow Survey (1989), (1989)
Bateman, , Ten Years Digging (1861), (1861), 151
Bateman, , Ten Years Digging (1861), (1861), 118
Bateman, Desc & Obs Further Discoveries in the Barrows of Derbyshire,
Bateman, Illustrations of Antiquity (Unpub volume of drawings), Sheffield City Museum
Carrington, Barrow Diggers (Unpub MS with letters and notes), 1848,
Carrington, Barrow Diggers (Unpub MS with letters and notes), 1848,
Darvill,T., MPP Single Monument Class Description - Bowl Barrows, (1988)

End of official listing