Bell barrow 250m north-west of Larkwhistle Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1012948

Date first listed: 26-Aug-1924

Date of most recent amendment: 10-Jul-1991


Ordnance survey map of Bell barrow 250m north-west of Larkwhistle Farm
© 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: West Berkshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Brimpton

National Grid Reference: SU 56965 62941


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

Reasons for Designation

Bell barrows, the most visually impressive form of round barrow, are funerary monuments dating to the Early and Middle Bronze Age, with most examples belonging to the period 1500-1100 BC. They occur either in isolation or in round barrow cemeteries and were constructed as single or multiple mounds covering burials, often in pits, and surrounded by an enclosure ditch. The burials are frequently accompanied by weapons, personal ornaments and pottery and appear to be those of aristocratic individuals, usually men. Bell barrows (particularly multiple barrows) are rare nationally, with less than 250 known examples, most of which are in Wessex. Their richness in terms of grave goods provides evidence for chronological and cultural links amongst early prehistoric communities over most of southern and eastern England as well as providing an insight into their beliefs and social organisation. As a particularly rare form of round barrow, all identified bell barrows would normally be considered to be of national importance.

The Larkwhistle Farm bell barrow is particularly important as it survives well and appears as an outlier to a wider barrow cemetery 600m to the south-east. Such cemeteries give a clear indication of the intensity with which areas were settled during the Bronze Age period. With no evidence of formal excavation, the site also has considerable archaeological potential.


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


The monument includes a large bell barrow surviving in a private garden 250m north-west of Larkwhistle Farm. The monument has a maximum diameter of 60m. The central mound is 25m across and survives to a height of 2.5m. This is surrounded by a berm c.5m wide, a bank c.5m wide and 0.5m high and a wide shallow ditch 8m across and up to 0.4m deep. The ditch, from which mound material was quarried, is visible as an earthwork on all but the north-west side of the monument where it survives as a buried feature. The barrow is situated 600m north-west of a linear barrow cemetery on Brimpton Common.

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: 12117

Legacy System: RSM


Berkshire SMR,

End of official listing