Two bowl barrows 300m north-east of Sevenbarrows House: part of the Seven Barrows cemetery
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1012434
Date first listed: 27-Jun-1991
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: West Berkshire (Unitary Authority)
District: Vale of White Horse (District Authority)
National Grid Reference: SU 32672 83189
Reasons for Designation
Bowl barrows, the most numerous form of round barrow, are funerary monuments
dating from the Late Neolithic period to the Late Bronze Age, with most
examples belonging to the period 2400-1500 BC. They were constructed as
earthen or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple
burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often
acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Often superficially similar,
although differing widely in size, they exhibit regional variations in form
and a diversity of burial practices. There are over 10,000 surviving bowl
barrows recorded nationally (many more have already been destroyed), occurring
across most of lowland Britain. Often occupying prominent locations, they are
a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable
variation of form and longevity as a monument type provide important
information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisations amongst early
prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period
and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of
The Sevenbarrows Farm bowl barrows are important as, despite levelling by cultivation, they are an integral part of the `Seven Barrows' cemetery. Barrow cemeteries give an indication of the intensity with which areas were settled during prehistory and provide evidence for the range of beliefs and nature of social organisation during the Bronze Age. The Seven barrows cemetery is a fine example of its class containing a wide range of barrow types.
The monument includes two bowl barrows set just above the floor of a dry
valley in an area of undulating chalk downland. The barrow mounds are
orientated NE-SW and are separated by a distance of some 15-20m. Both have
been levelled by cultivation although in each case the ditch, from which
material was quarried during construction of the monument, and the old ground
surface survive as buried features. The southern mound originally had a
diameter of 10m and was surrounded by a ditch c.2m wide. The northern mound
was 22m across and the ditch 3m wide. Sarsen boulders were once recorded on
the surface of the southern mound.
Both mounds are part of the Seven Barrows cemetery, the core of which lies to
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: 12277
Legacy System: RSM
Books and journals
Case, H, 'Berkshire Archaeological Journal' in Berkshire Archaeological Journal (Volume 55), , Vol. 55, (1956), 15-31
This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing