Bowl barrow in Great Wood
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1014456
Date first listed: 05-Dec-1995
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: The City of Brighton and Hove (Unitary Authority)
National Park: SOUTH DOWNS
National Grid Reference: TQ 32852 09440
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
Although the barrow in Great Wood has been partly disturbed by tree growth and waste dumping, it survives comparatively well, and part excavation has shown that it will contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence dating to the period in which it was constructed and used. The presence of later burials within the mound indicates the continued recognition and utilization of the funerary nature of the monument into the historical period.
The monument includes a prehistoric bowl barrow situated on a ridge of the
Sussex Downs towards the north eastern edge of the modern town of Brighton.
The barrow has a roughly circular mound c.14.5m in diameter, which survives to
a height of up 0.8m. The uneven profile of the mound indicates some previous
disturbance caused by partial excavation and modern waste dumping. The
excavation took place in the 1890s, when three extended skeletons were
discovered in the mound. These are thought to indicate the later reuse of the
barrow, representing pagan burials deposited during the Early Middle Ages.
Surrounding the mound is a ditch from which material used to construct the
barrow was excavated. This has become infilled over the years, but survives as
a buried feature c.2m wide. A modern tarmac path has been laid over part of
the ditch on its south western side. The surface of the path is excluded from
the scheduling, but the ground beneath 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: 27018
Legacy System: RSM
Source 2, Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, TQ 30 NW 41, (1951)
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 Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing