Round cairn 680m north east of Bygate Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1015845

Date first listed: 03-Jul-1997


Ordnance survey map of Round cairn 680m north east of Bygate Farm
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This copy shows the entry on 13-Dec-2018 at 13:42:23.


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

District: Northumberland (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Belsay

National Grid Reference: NZ 07510 76937


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

Reasons for Designation

Round cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as stone mounds covering single or multiple burials. These burials may be placed within the mound in stone-lined compartments called cists. In some cases the cairn was surrounded by a ditch. Often occupying prominent locations, cairns are a major visual element in the modern landscape. They are a relatively common feature of the uplands and are the stone equivalent of the earthen round barrows of the lowlands. Their considerable variation in form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

Despite some disturbance from antiquarian investigation, the round cairn 680m north east of Bygate farm is reasonably well preserved and retains significant archaeological deposits. It is one of few surviving round cairns in this part of Northumberland which will add to our understanding of prehistoric ritual and funerary practices.


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


The monument includes a round cairn of Bronze Age date situated on the eastern slopes of Sharp Law. The cairn, constructed of stone and earth measures 10m in diameter and stands to a maximum height of 0.5m. The cairn has been disturbed at its centre in the past. A cist, or stone coffin, containing a human skull and a whole Bronze Age pot recorded from the area in the early 19th century is thought to have come from the centre of this cairn.

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: 28553

Legacy System: RSM


NZ07NE 09,
NZ07NE 17,

End of official listing