Banked cairn 125m NNE of Caradon Hill summit


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1011687

Date first listed: 09-Oct-1981

Date of most recent amendment: 25-Feb-1992


Ordnance survey map of Banked cairn 125m NNE of Caradon Hill summit
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Cornwall (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Linkinhorne

National Grid Reference: SX 27331 70870


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 quality and diversity of the evidence is such that the moor has been the subject of detailed archaeological survey and hence it forms one of the best recorded upland landscapes in England. Of particular note are the extensive relict landscapes of Prehistoric, medieval and post-medieval date. Together these 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. Banked cairns are funerary monuments dating to the Early Bronze Age (c.2000-1600 BC), covering single or multiple burials. They comprise a circular bank of stone rubble, up to 30m in external diameter and sometimes accompanied by an internal ditch, surrounding a central mound of earth and rubble. A kerb of edge-set stones sometimes bounds the edges of the bank or mound or both. They can occur as isolated monuments, in small groups or in cairn cemeteries. The burials, either inhumations or cremations, can occur in small pits or in box-like structures of stone slabs called cists either dug into the mound or set into the old land surface. Along with other funerary monuments, they illustrate the diversity of beliefs and burial practices in the Bronze Age. Although no precise figure is available, current evidence indicates that there are under 250 known examples of this monument class nationally. As a rare class exhibiting considerable variation in form, a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of preservation. This banked cairn on Caradon Hill displays a good range of surviving component features and has never been excavated. Its importance is enhanced by its position within a cairn group containing a variety of different types of burial cairn, demonstrating well the diversity of burial practice during the Bronze Age.


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


The monument comprises a large circular embanked funerary cairn, part of a linear cairn group near the summit of Caradon Hill on SE Bodmin Moor. The cairn survives as a circular bank of small stones, 19m in external diameter, 2-3m wide and 0.5m high, encircling a central mound, 12m in diameter and up to 1.5m high, composed of medium to large stones. Around the S and SW sectors of the central mound's edge are a row of end-set, inward-sloping, large slabs surviving from a retaining kerb. The surface of the central mound shows a number of hollows from stone-robbers, whose spoil has been dumped largely over the N and NE sectors of the cairn, filling the space between the mound and outer bank in that area. The same activities are responsible for a pit in the NE part of the mound, exposing a large natural boulder in its base; this pit is the only disturbance to reach a significant depth into the body of the cairn, and is off-centre and restricted in extent; consequently it is considered that any primary funerary deposits at the centre of this monument, and secondary deposits made in most other areas, will survive intact, together with the old land surface on which the monument was constructed. This cairn appears on the 1907 OS map, and has been surveyed on several occasions since then, but has not been subject to archaeological excavation. It lies near the summit of Caradon Hill, at the N end of a linear cairn group which extends to the SW across the hill's summit and contains ten recorded cairns of several types typical of the Early to Middle Bronze Age (c.2000 - 1000 BC).

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: 15039

Legacy System: RSM


3/1991, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN 1409.04 and .12,
AM 7 scheduling documentation and maplet for CO 541e, Consulted 3/1991
Consulted 3/1991, Carter, A/RCHME, 1:2500 Air Photo Transcripton: SX 2770 (Consulted 3/1991),
Consulted 3/1991, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN 1409.08,
Consulted 3/1991, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN 1409.10,
Title: Ordnance Survey 6": 1 mile Map: Cornwall XXVIII NW Source Date: 1907 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

End of official listing