Bowl barrow, known as Buck's Head round barrow, 540m east of Dunley


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1016996

Date first listed: 17-Aug-1948

Date of most recent amendment: 24-Sep-1999


Ordnance survey map of Bowl barrow, known as Buck's Head round barrow, 540m east of Dunley
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Gloucestershire

District: Stroud (District Authority)

Parish: Cranham

National Grid Reference: SO 91316 12602


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

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 protection.

Despite partial excavation, Buck's Head round barrow survives well in an area of known prehistoric activity with two bowl barrows less than 1km to the south east. The mound will still contain evidence relating to the primary and secondary burials, along with grave goods, which will provide information on prehistoric funerary practices and about the size of the local community at that time. The barrow mound will also preserve environmental information in the buried original ground surface, predating the construction of the barrow and giving an insight into the landscape in which the monument was set. In addition the mound and its surrounding ditch will contain environmental evidence in the form of organic remains, which will relate both to the barrow and the wider landscape.


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


The monument includes a bowl barrow just below the crest of a hill 540m east of Dunley. The barrow mound measures 35m in diameter and is about 1m high. Surrounding the mound is a ditch from which material was excavated during the construction of the barrow. The ditch is no longer visible at ground level, but survives as a buried feature about 3m wide. Buck's Head barrow is believed to be the same barrow as the Hungerfield barrow, which was partially excavated by JE Dorrington in 1880. Two dry stone walls were revealed 0.9m apart, which ran north and south to the edge of the barrow mound. In a cist, formed from a concrete-like substance between the two walls, were the primary cremations of a woman and child. Two secondary interments were also found, one a cremation and the second, an inhumation. No mention is made of any accompanying grave goods.

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: 32366

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Dorrington, J E, 'Trans. of the Bristol and Glos. Arch. Society' in Remarks On A Round Barrow In Hungerfield, Cranham, , Vol. V part 1, (1881), 133-134
O`Neil, H E, Grinsell, L V, 'Proc of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Arch Soc' in Gloucestershire Barrows, , Vol. LXXIX, (1960), 111

End of official listing