Bell barrow north east of Westfield Farm and 150m south of Wilsford round barrow cemetery


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010876

Date first listed: 22-Feb-1995


Ordnance survey map of Bell barrow north east of Westfield Farm and 150m south of Wilsford round barrow cemetery
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Wilsford cum Lake

National Grid Reference: SU 11849 39587


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

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 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. Bell barrows, the most visually impressive form of round barrow, are funerary monuments dating to the Early and Middle Bronze Age, with most examples belonging to the period 1600-1300 BC. They occur either in isolation or in round barrow cemeteries and were constructed as single or multiple mounds covering burials, often in pits, and surrounded by an enclosure ditch. The burials are frequently accompanied by weapons, personal ornaments and pottery and appear to be those of aristocratic individuals, usually men. Bell barrows are rare nationally, with less than 250 known examples, many of which are in Wessex and around 30 of which are in the Stonehenge area. This group of monuments will provide important information on the development of this area during the Neolithic and Bronze Age periods.

The bell barrow north east of Westfield Farm survives comparatively well and is known from finds recorded in the 19th century to contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed.


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


The monument includes a bell barrow north east of Westfield Farm and 150m south of the Wilsford round barrow cemetery. It is situated below the crest of a ridge with views to the south east across the Avon valley. The barrow has a mound 20m in diameter and 1m high. It is surrounded by a berm and outer ditch which are now difficult to identify on the ground, but are visible on aerial photographs, from which it is calculated that the berm is 8m wide and the ditch 3m wide. The overall diameter is therefore 42m. The monument was previously recorded as a bowl barrow, but is now interpreted as a bell barrow. A field visit in the late 19th century recovered food vessel sherds, an axe, a flint scraper and bone objects.

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: 10358

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Grinsell, LV, The Victoria History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume V, (1957), 199
17, Salisbury Museum Accessions Register, (1949)

End of official listing