Disc barrow 220m south west of Stonehenge forming part of a round barrow cemetery on Stonehenge Down


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012385

Date first listed: 10-Mar-1925

Date of most recent amendment: 01-May-1995


Ordnance survey map of Disc barrow 220m south west of Stonehenge forming part of a round barrow cemetery on Stonehenge Down
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Amesbury

National Grid Reference: SU 12010 41985


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. Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (2000-700 BC). They comprise closely spaced groups of up to 30 round barrows - rubble or earthen mounds covering single or multiple burials. Most cemeteries developed over a considerable period of time, often many centuries, and in some cases acted as a focus for burials as late as the early medieval period. They exhibit considerable diversity of burial rite, plan and form, frequently including several different types of round barrow and occasionally associated with earlier long barrows. Where investigation beyond the round barrows has occurred, contemporary or later 'flat' burials between the barrow mounds have often been revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland England with a marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases they are clustered around other important contemporary monuments, as is the case both here and at Avebury. Often occupying prominent positions, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape, while their diversity and their longevity as a monument type provide important information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities.

Disc barrows are funerary monuments dating from 1600-1200 BC. They occur either in isolation or, as in this case, in round barrow cemeteries. Disc barrows were constructed as a circular or oval area of level ground defined by a bank and internal ditch and containing one or more central or eccentrically located small, low mounds, covering burials, usually in pits. The burials are normally cremations and are frequently accompanied by pottery vessels, tools and personal ornaments. Disc barrows are rare nationally with only 250 examples known of which 29 are located within the Stonehenge area.

The disc barrow 220m south west of Stonehenge survives well and is known from partial excavation and geophysical survey 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 disc barrow situated 220m south west of Stonehenge forming part of a round barrow cemetery on Stonehenge Down. It is located on an east facing slope with views across Stonehenge towards New King Barrows. The Stonehenge Down barrow cemetery contains eight round barrows in all, including six bowl barrows, an oval bowl barrow and a disc barrow. The disc barrow mound is positioned to the north east of the centre of the barrow, and is oval in shape measuring 17m by 24m and 0.5m high. Around the mound is a berm ranging in width between 4m and 8m. This is surrounded by a ditch, from which material was quarried during construction of the monument and which is 4m wide and 0.3m deep, and an outer bank 7m wide and 0.3m high, giving an overall diameter of 52m. The barrow is slightly oval. Partial excavation in the 19th century revealed a primary cremation within a cist. This barrow has recently been the subject of a geophysical survey which confirmed the survival of archaeological remains.

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: 10370

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Grinsell, LV, The Victoria History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume V, (1957), 222
Hoare, R C, Ancient History of Wiltshire, (1812), 127

End of official listing