The Longstone: a long barrow 60m south of Longstone Cottage


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010417

Date first listed: 09-Oct-1981

Date of most recent amendment: 31-Jan-1992


Ordnance survey map of The Longstone: a long barrow 60m south of Longstone Cottage
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This copy shows the entry on 21-Nov-2018 at 10:35:46.


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

District: Isle of Wight (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Brighstone

National Grid Reference: SZ 40705 84225


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

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 long barrows are recorded in England. 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 180 long barrows of Hampshire, Wiltshire and Dorset form the densest and one of the most significant concentrations of monuments of this type in the country. Only three examples, however, are known on the Isle of Wight thus making the Longstone an important monument for understanding the nature and scale of Neolithic occupation on the island.


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


The monument includes a long barrow set on the crest of a steep south facing slope within 2km of the south coast of the Isle of Wight. It survives as an earthwork orientated east-west and appears pear-shaped in plan. The barrow mound is 31m long, 9m wide and varies in height between 1m at the east end and 0.2m at the west. Two large sandstone blocks are set on the east end of the mound. The upright stone is c.4m high and too large to have formed part of a burial chamber while the recumbent stone is 3m long. Flanking the north side of the barrow mound are the traces of a ditch from which material was quarried during the construction of the monument. This survives to a width of c.3m and is 0.2m deep. The ditch S of the mound is believed to survive as a buried feature. The site was partially excavated by J.Hawkes in 1956. Finds included a sandstone kerb revetment on the north side of the mound as well as a flint scraper and two sherds of pottery believed to be contemporary with the monument.

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: 12307

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Hawkes, J, 'Antiquity' in The Longstone, Mottistone, , Vol. 31, (1957)

End of official listing