Platform barrow and saucer barrow 350m ESE of Blackcap


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012621

Date first listed: 09-Oct-1981

Date of most recent amendment: 10-May-1991


Ordnance survey map of Platform barrow and saucer barrow 350m ESE of Blackcap
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. 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.

County: East Sussex

District: Lewes (District Authority)

Parish: St. John (Without)

National Park: SOUTH DOWNS

National Grid Reference: TQ 37721 12345

Reasons for Designation

Saucer barrows and platform barrows are funerary monuments of the Early Bronze Age. They occur either in isolation or in barrow cemeteries (closely-spaced groups of round barrows) and were constructed as circular ditches with slight outer banks and a low mound in the interior. In the case of the saucer barrow and the central mound took the form of a low dome, while in the case of the platform barrow it formed a flat-topped raised area. The mounds covered one or more burials, either inhumations or cremations, which were usually placed in central pits and which were often accompanied by pottery vessels, tools and personal ornaments. Saucer barrows are rare nationally, with only about 60 examples known, most of which are in Wessex. Platform barrows are rarer still, fewer then 50 examples having been recorded nationally. They were constructed as low, flat-topped mounds of earth surrounded by a shallow ditch. None of the known examples stands higher then 1m above the general ground level, and most are considerably lower than this. They occur across southern Britain but show a marked concentration in East and West Sussex. These types of barrow provide an insight into the diversity of beliefs and social organisation in Bronze Age society. Due to their extreme rarity and considerable fragility, all identified saucer and platform barrows are normally be considered to be of national importance.


The monument includes a pair of Bronze Age burial mounds -- a saucer barrow and a platform barrow -- near the summit of Blackcap. The more easterly of the pair measures 14m in total diameter. The central mound, only 10-15cm above the level of the surrounding ground, is defined by a shallow circular ditch to 0.30m in depth. The ditch is in turn encircled by a bank 0.10m in height and 1.5m across. The form of this feature allows it to be classified as a saucer barrow because of its similarity to an upturned saucer. Thirteen metres west of this example is the second feature, 15m in total diameter, which has no outer bank but takes the form of a shallow ditch surrounding a raised platform up to 0.20m above the surrounding ground level. The ditch is just 0.15m deep and is most easily visible on the eastern and south-western sides. The flat-topped central area allows this example to be classified as a platform barrow.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 12798

Legacy System: RSM


TQ 31 SE 11 A,
TQ 31 SE 11 B,

End of official listing