Four round barrows 740m east of Kitchen Barrow, forming part of a round barrow cemetery on All Cannings Down

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1014025

Date first listed: 10-Nov-1964

Date of most recent amendment: 18-Mar-1996

Map

Ordnance survey map of Four round barrows 740m east of Kitchen Barrow, forming part of a round barrow cemetery on All Cannings Down
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

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

District: Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Bishops Cannings

National Grid Reference: SU 07426 64821

Summary

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

Reasons for Designation

A small number of areas in southern England appear to have acted as foci for ceremonial and ritual activity during the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age periods. Two of the best known and earliest recognised, with references in the 17th century, are around Avebury and Stonehenge, now jointly designated as a World Heritage Site. In the Avebury area, the henge monument itself, the West Kennet Avenue, the Sanctuary, West Kennet long barrow, Windmill Hill causewayed enclosure and the enigmatic Silbury Hill are well-known. Whilst the other Neolithic long barrows, the many Bronze Age round barrows and other associated sites are less well-known, together they define one of the richest and most varied areas of Neolithic and Bronze Age ceremonial and ritual monuments in the country. Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (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 and occasionally associated with earlier long barrows. Where investigation beyond the round barrows has occurred, contemporary or later `flat' burials between the barrow mounds have often been revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland England with a marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases they are clustered around other important contemporary monuments, as is the case both here and at Stonehenge. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape, while their diversity and their longevity as a monument type provide important information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. All examples are considered worthy of protection.

The three bowl barrows and one disc barrow forming the monument all survive as visible earthworks and are known from part excavation to contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to the cemetery and the landscape in which it was built.

History

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

Details

The monument includes three Bronze Age bowl barrows and a disc barrow situated on a south facing slope, 740m east of Kitchen Barrow. The barrows are aligned roughly north west to south east and together with a bowl barrow 70m south, form a cemetery which contains a total of five round barrows. It is one of a number of cemeteries on the Downs. The disc barrow has been quarried on its western side but is visible at ground level as a mound 3m across and up to 0.4m high. This is surrounded by a flat berm 16m wide, beyond which there is an outer bank c.2m wide. This has been partly levelled, although sections of it stand up to 0.2m high. The three bowl barrows survive as upstanding earthworks, the mounds of which measure between 18m and 20m in diameter and stand up to 1.5m high. These are surrounded by quarry ditches from which material was obtained during their construction. These all measure 2m wide and although partly infilled remain open to a depth of 0.4m. The barrows all have outer counter-scarp banks 1m wide and 0.3m high. The middle one of the three bowl barrows has been damaged by quarrying to the north and west which has removed the counter-scarp bank and the outside edge of the quarry ditch on these sides. The remains of all three barrows are clearly visible. The three bowl barrows were all partly excavated in the late 1850s when finds included cremation burials, shale and faience beads, a pendant and a flint scraper. All the finds are now held at the British Museum.

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.

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 21891

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Other
SU 06 SE 613, C.A.O., Bronze Age bowl barrow, (1992)
SU06SE 614, C.A.O., Disc barrow, (1992)
SU06SE 615, C.A.O., Undated, excavated bowl barrow, (1992)
SU06SE 616, C.A.O., Bowl barrow, (1992)

End of official listing