The Fishing Barrow on Godlingston Heath


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1013836

Date first listed: 06-Jul-1959

Date of most recent amendment: 31-Jan-1996


Ordnance survey map of The Fishing Barrow on Godlingston Heath
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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This copy shows the entry on 17-Dec-2018 at 15:39:14.


The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Dorset

District: Purbeck (District Authority)

Parish: Studland

National Grid Reference: SZ 01811 82107


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 Fishing Barrow on Godlingston Heath survives well despite some disturbance caused by the construction of a golf bunker which has led to the flattening of the upper mound and infilling of some areas of the quarry ditch. The monument forms one of a dispersed group of bell barrows which occur locally.


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


The monument includes a bell barrow on Godlingston Heath in the Isle of Purbeck. It is set on a low sandstone ridge overlooking Poole Harbour to the north east. The barrow, which is known as `The Fishing Barrow', has a central mound composed of earth, sand and turf with maximum dimensions of 29m in diameter and c.2.5m in height. This is surrounded by a berm or gently sloping platform 2m wide which is surrounded by a ditch from which material was quarried during the construction of the monument. The ditch is known from a survey conducted in the 1960s to be 3.5m wide and c.0.5m deep. The ditch is visible as an earthwork in the north western and south eastern areas, but has become infilled to the north east and south west, where it survives as a buried feature. Excluded from the scheduling are the bench and golf ball washing facility situated on the north eastern side of the mound, although the underlying ground is included.

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: 22972

Legacy System: RSM


Mention berm of site,
Mention ditch of site,
Mention name of site,

End of official listing