Bowl barrow 400m east of Swan Lodge: part of a dispersed round barrow cemetery on and around Salthouse Heath


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013579

Date first listed: 26-Jun-1924

Date of most recent amendment: 30-Oct-1995


Ordnance survey map of Bowl barrow 400m east of Swan Lodge: part of a dispersed round 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: Salthouse

National Grid Reference: TG 07139 41870

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 bowl barrow 400m east of Swan Lodge survives well, despite the limited excavation of the mound. The area disturbed by this excavation is small 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 before and during that period is likely to be preserved also, in soils buried beneath the mound. The barrow is a component of the largest round barrow cemetery in Norfolk and has additional interest in that context. The limited investigations of this and other barrows in the group have shown that the cemetery was in use over several centuries and includes different types of round barrow and a considerable diversity in the forms and rites of burial. The evidence contained in these barrows as a group is therefore of wider significance for the study of the character and development of the prehistoric population of the area.


The monument includes a bowl barrow situated on level ground in the south western part of Salthouse Heath, 80m east of Bixes Lane and the boundary between the parishes of Salthouse and Cley next the Sea. The barrow, which is within a dispersed round barrow cemetery extending over an area of c.1.3 sq km, is visible as an earthen mound standing to a height of c.1.8m and covering a circular area c.9m in diameter. The mound is thought to be encircled by a ditch c.2m wide, similar to ditches which can still be seen around other barrows in the area. This has become completely infilled and is no longer visible on the ground surface, but will survive as a buried feature, and the estimated overall diameter of the barrow is therefore 13m. The barrow was the subject of a limited excavation carried out in 1914, from which sherds of Bronze Age pottery were recovered, and the remains of a rectilinear trench c.0.3m deep and between 1m and 2m wide in the surface of the mound are believed to mark the area of this investigation.

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: 21367

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Henderson, E, 'Proc Prehist Soc East Anglia' in Opening of a Barrow at Salthouse, Norfolk, , Vol. 2, (1918), 155

End of official listing