Bowl barrow 290m west of Firle Beacon


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012498

Date first listed: 30-Jan-1967

Date of most recent amendment: 31-May-1991


Ordnance survey map of Bowl barrow 290m west of Firle Beacon
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: East Sussex

District: Lewes (District Authority)

Parish: Firle

National Park: SOUTH DOWNS

National Grid Reference: TQ 48271 05930


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

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 protection.

Despite the limited damage to the barrow mound caused by partial excavation, the monument west of Firle Beacon retains significant archaeological potential for the recovery of evidence of the nature and duration of its use and of the environment in which it was constructed. As one of many Neolithic and Bronze Age funerary monuments in the area, the barrow indicates the significance of the South Downs for burial in the later prehistoric period.


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


The monument includes a bowl barrow which comprises a mound and a surrounding ditch. The mound measures 9m across and stands to a height of 0.8m. The surrounding ditch, which has been infilled by soil eroded from the mound, is visible only as an area of lusher grass 2m across around the foot of the mound. The diameter of the mound and ditch together is 13m. The hollow in the summit of the mound indicates that the barrow was partially excavated in the 19th century.

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: 12873

Legacy System: RSM


Darvill, T, Monument Class Description - Bowl barrows, 1988,

End of official listing