Six bowl barrows 560m north of New Barn: part of a barrow cemetery on Monkton Down


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013331

Date first listed: 17-Jun-1925

Date of most recent amendment: 10-Jul-1991


Ordnance survey map of Six bowl barrows 560m north of New Barn: part of a barrow cemetery on Monkton 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: Winterbourne Monkton

National Grid Reference: SU 11656 72303


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

Reasons for Designation

Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (c.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, occasionally associated with earlier long barrows. Where large scale investigation has been undertaken around them, contemporary or later "flat" burials between the barrow mounds have often been revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland Britain, with a marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases, they are clustered around other important contemporary monuments such as henges. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape, whilst their diversity and their longevity as a monument type provide important information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving or partly-surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

The six bowl barrows which form the core of the Monkton Down barrow cemetery survive well despite partial excavation of the site in 1849. They have good potential for the recovery of archaeological evidence for the nature and duration of use of the monument and the environment within which it was constructed. The importance of the monument is enhanced by the fact that numerous other round barrows and round barrow cemeteries survive in the area as well as additional evidence for contemporary settlement. This illustrates the intensity with which the area was settled during the Bronze Age period.


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


The monument includes part of a round barrow cemetery comprising six tightly grouped barrows set above the floor of a dry valley in an area of undulating chalk downland. The barrow mound at SU11647233 is 1m high and 25m in diameter. Immediately to the south of this, at SU11647229, is an irregular shaped bowl barrow 1.5m high, measuring 27m by 23m and orientated SW-NE. At SU11667230 is a further bowl barrow 17m across and 2m high, sloping steeply to the south but gradually to the north. At SU11667233 is a bowl barrow 20m across and 0.5m high. At SU11697231 is a bowl barrow 24m across and 0.5m high, while at SU11677227 is a bowl barrow 18m in diameter and 0.5m high. All the barrow mounds are surrounded by ditches from which material used in the construction of the monument was quarried. These either surround individual mounds or enclose groups of mounds, but in either case have been infilled over the years and survive as buried features c.3m wide. Some of the mounds were partly excavated by Merewether in 1849. Finds included a burial in one of the mounds, animal bones, pottery, flint artefacts and a shaped sarsen.

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: 12264

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
'Proceedings of the Archaeological Institute, Salisbury' in Proceedings of the Archaeological Institute, Salisbury, (1849), 104-5

End of official listing