Round cairn 460m north of Showery Tor


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1011213

Date first listed: 04-Nov-1993


Ordnance survey map of Round cairn 460m north of Showery Tor
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This copy shows the entry on 12-Dec-2018 at 16:11:12.


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

District: Cornwall (Unitary Authority)

Parish: St. Breward

National Grid Reference: SX 14981 81779


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

Reasons for Designation

Bodmin Moor, the largest of the Cornish granite uplands, has long been recognised to have exceptional preservation of archaeological remains. The Moor has been the subject of detailed archaeological survey and is one of the best recorded upland landscapes in England. The extensive relict landscapes of prehistoric, medieval and post-medieval date provide direct evidence for human exploitation of the Moor from the earliest prehistoric period onwards. The well-preserved and often visible relationship between settlement sites, field systems, ceremonial and funerary monuments as well as later industrial remains provides significant insights into successive changes in the pattern of land use through time. Round cairns are funerary monuments covering single or multiple burials and dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as mounds of earth and stone rubble up to 40m in external diameter but usually considerably smaller; a kerb of edge-set stones sometimes bounds the edges of the mound. Burials were placed in small pits, or on occasion within a box-like structure of stone slabs called a cist, let into the old ground surface or dug into the body of the cairn. Round cairns can occur as isolated monuments, in small groups or in larger cemeteries. Their considerable variation in form and longevity as a monument type provides important information on the diversity of beliefs, burial practices and social organisation in the Bronze Age. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of preservation.

This large round cairn on the Showery Tor ridge has survived substantially intact. Despite the relatively recent and well-defined actions of stone robbers, it will retain many of its original features including the unusual peripheral kerb, extensive areas of its buried land surface and associated burial deposits. Its proximity to other broadly contemporary funerary and settlement sites demonstrates well the nature of funerary practices and the organisation of land use during the Bronze Age.


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


The monument includes a large prehistoric funerary round cairn situated near other broadly contemporary cairns, settlement sites and field systems on the northern spur of the Showery Tor ridge on north-west Bodmin Moor. The round cairn survives as a circular mound of heaped rubble, 22.5m in diameter and up to 1.5m high. Relatively recent stone-robbing has produced a central hollow, 12m in diameter, tapered to ground level at its base. Further limited stone- robbing from the cairn's outer surface reveals an intermittent line of edge- set slabs embedded within the rubble, 3m to 3.5m in from the mound's perimeter, forming a kerb to the cairn.

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: 15197

Legacy System: RSM


consulted 10/1991, Carter, A./RCHME, 1:2500 AP transcriptions for SX 1379-81; SX 1480-82,
consulted 10/1991, Check Print 1 for CO 865 generated on 30/9/91,
consulted 10/1991, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN 3385,
Saunders, A.D., AM7 scheduling documentation for CO 865, 1972,
Title: Ordnance Survey 6": 1 mile Map; Cornwall XV SW Source Date: Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

End of official listing