Bowl barrow known as Three Halfpenny Hill: part of a barrow cemetery on and around Salthouse Heath


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013565

Date first listed: 26-Jun-1924

Date of most recent amendment: 30-Oct-1995


Ordnance survey map of Bowl barrow known as Three Halfpenny Hill: part of a barrow cemetery on and around Salthouse Heath
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Norfolk

District: North Norfolk (District Authority)

Parish: Kelling

County: Norfolk

District: North Norfolk (District Authority)

Parish: Salthouse

National Grid Reference: TG 07742 42160


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.

The barrow known as Three Halfpenny Hill survives well and the component earthworks remain in a particularly good state of preservation, despite having undergone some disturbance from a 19th century antiquarian investigation. This disturbance was on a small scale in relation to the monument as a whole, which retains archaeological information concerning the construction of the barrow and the manner and duration of its use. Evidence for the local environment prior to and during that time will also be contained in the soils buried beneath the mound and outer bank and in the fill of the ditches. The barrow is one of the largest and most elaborate in external form of all those within the cemetery which is, in turn, the largest round barrow cemetery in Norfolk. It is apparent, in the evidence from this and other barrows in the vicinity, that the cemetery was in use over several centuries and includes a considerable diversity in the forms and rites of burial. The evidence contained in the barrows as a group therefore has a wider importance for the study of the character and development of the prehistoric population of the area.


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


The monument includes the bowl barrow known as Three Halfpenny Hill, within a dispersed round barrow cemetery which extends over an area of c.1.3 sq km on and immediately around Salthouse Heath. The barrow is situated on the parish boundary at the eastern edge of Salthouse Heath and is visible as an earthen mound encircled by a ditch and bank. The mound stands to a height of c.2m and covers a roughly circular area c.25m in diameter. The surrounding ditch, which was dug during the construction of the barrow and has become partly infilled, is c.4m wide, and the bank around its outer edge is c.5m wide at the base, with a maximum height of c.0.4m. The overall diameter of the visible earthworks is therefore c.43m. The bank on the eastern side of the barrow has been levelled, where it was at one time crossed by a track which ran along the parish boundary. A description of the barrow in the mid-19th century refers to a second, outer ditch which can no longer be seen, but which will survive as a buried feature. A small pottery vessel c.10cm high, of prehistoric type, was recovered from near the surface of the mound at its north western edge, when Mr Bolding of Weybourne carried out a limited investigation of the barrow in 1849. The field boundary fence on the eastern side of the monument is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it is included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 3 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: 21363

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Chester, G J, 'Norfolk Archaeology' in Account of the Discovery of Ancient British Remains near Cromer, , Vol. 5, (1859), 264

End of official listing