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Oval barrow at the western end of Stonehill Down, 800m south west of East Creech Farm

List Entry Summary

This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Oval barrow at the western end of Stonehill Down, 800m south west of East Creech Farm

List entry Number: 1014136

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Dorset

District: Purbeck

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Church Knowle

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 22-Jul-1964

Date of most recent amendment: 19-Mar-1996

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 28313

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

Reasons for Designation

Oval barrows are funerary and ceremonial monuments of the Early to Middle Neolithic periods, with the majority of dated monuments belonging to the later part of the range. They were constructed as earthen or rubble mounds of roughly elliptical plan, usually delimited by quarry ditches. These ditches can vary from paired "banana-shaped" ditches flanking the mound to "U-shaped" or unbroken oval ditches nearly or wholly encircling it. Along with the long barrows, oval barrows represent the burial places of Britain's early farming communities and, as such, are amongst the oldest field monuments surviving visibly in the present landscape. Where investigated, oval barrows have produced two distinct types of burial rite: communal burials of groups of individuals, including adults and children, laid directly on the ground surface before the barrow was built; and burials of one or two adults interred in a grave pit centrally placed beneath the barrow mound. Certain sites provide evidence for several phases of funerary monument preceding the barrow and, consequently, it is probable that they may have acted as important ritual sites for local communities over a considerable period of time. Similarly, as the filling of the ditches around oval barrows often contains deliberately placed deposits of pottery, flintwork and bone, periodic ceremonial activity may have taken place at the barrow subsequent to its construction. Oval barrows are very rare nationally, with less than 50 recorded examples in England. As one of the few types of Neolithic structure to survive as earthworks, and due to their rarity, their considerable age and their longevity as a monument type, all oval barrows are considered to be nationally important.

The oval barrow at the western end of Stonehill Down survives well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed. The monument represents one of only a very few examples of its class known in the area.

History

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

Details

The monument includes an oval barrow situated at the western end of Stonehill Down in the Isle of Purbeck, overlooking Poole Harbour to the east and the Purbeck Hills to the south. The barrow has a mound composed of earth, flint and chalk with maximum dimensions of 24m from north-south, 31m from east-west and a maximum height of c.0.8m. The mound is flanked to the north and south by ditches from which material was quarried during the construction of the monument. These were recorded as earthworks in the 1960s, when they had dimensions of between 4m and 6m. They have since become partly infilled, but remain visible as earthworks 3m wide.

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.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 431
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 431
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 431
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 431

National Grid Reference: SY 92336 82087

Map

Map
© 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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The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1014136 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 25-Apr-2018 at 05:32:07.

End of official listing