A cairn, a carved rock, and a rubble bank, in the south west corner of Scale Knoll Allotment, 800m south east of Far East Hope, Barningham Moor
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1017431
Date first listed: 24-Oct-1997
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This copy shows the entry on 22-Feb-2019 at 18:50:59.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: County Durham (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference: NZ 04710 08607
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.
Prehistoric rock carving is found on natural boulders and rock outcrops in many areas of upland Britain. It is especially common in the north of England in Northumberland, Durham, and North and West Yorkshire. The most common form of decoration is the `cup' marking, where small cup-like hollows are worked into the surface of the rock. These cups may be surrounded by one or more `rings'. Single pecked lines extending from the cup through the rings may also exist, providing the design with a `tail'. Other shapes and patterns also occur but are less frequent. Carvings may occur singly, in small groups, or may cover extensive areas of rock surface. They date to the Late Neolithic and Bronze Age periods (2800-c.500 BC) and provide one of our most important insights into prehistoric `art'. The exact meaning of the designs remains unknown, but they may be interpreted as sacred or religious symbols. All positively identified prehistoric rock carvings will normally be identified as nationally important. The cairn, carved rock and rubble bank 800m south east of Far East Hope form part of a wider group of carved rocks and other archaeological features on Barningham Moor. The cairn has been slightly disturbed, but retains evidence of its form and location. The close relationship of this rubble bank to the carved rock and cairn is significant, and the rubble bank is therefore considered worthy of protection. The carving on the rock survives well. The carved rock, cairn, and rubble bank form an important part of the prehistoric landscape of Barningham Moor, which includes numerous other carved rocks and evidence for prehistoric burials, settlements and the agricultural use of the land. This site will therefore contribute to studies of such prehistoric landscapes and the changing patterns of land use over time.
The monument includes a cairn, a carved rock, and a rubble bank, all of which
are prehistoric in date. It is situated on Barningham Moor, in the southwest
corner of the modern sheep-grazing enclosure known as Scale Knoll Allotment.
The monument is on the east side of a small knoll, 800m south east of Far East
The cairn has a diameter of 5m, and a height of 0.3m. It has been only
slightly disturbed by stone-robbing in the past.
The carved sandstone rock measures 1.03m by 0.64m by 0.53m high. The carving
consists of between nine and 11 cups, four of them connected in pairs.
The rubble bank is 16m long, 2m wide, and attains a maximum height of 0.22m.
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: 30469
Legacy System: RSM
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