Wolf Pit round barrow at the southern end of Danby Rigg, 810m south east of Falcon Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018740

Date first listed: 09-Jan-1963

Date of most recent amendment: 02-Dec-1998


Ordnance survey map of Wolf Pit round barrow at the southern end of Danby Rigg, 810m south east of Falcon Farm
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: North Yorkshire

District: Scarborough (District Authority)

Parish: Danby


National Grid Reference: NZ 70523 03597


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.

Wolf Pit is a good example of the larger type of round barrow found in prominent locations on the moors. Excavations of round barrows in the region have shown that they demonstrate a very wide range of burial rites from simple scatters of cremated material to coffin inhumations and cremations contained in urns, typically dating to the Bronze Age. A common factor is that barrows were normally used for more than one burial and that the primary burial was frequently on or below the original ground surface, normally with secondary burials located within the body of the mound, which tend to survive undisturbed even if the barrow has been investigated by 19th century antiquarians. Most barrows include a small number of grave goods. These are often small pottery food vessels, but stone, bone, jet and bronze items have also occasionally been found.


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


The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of a prehistoric burial mound sited on a saddle over Danby Rigg between Raven Hill to the east and the village of Botton to the west. Wolf Pit survives as a quite steep sided, 35m diameter mound with a 10m diameter flat top. The barrow is sited on slightly sloping ground, sloping down to the north and west so that it is 1m high on the north side, but over 2m high on the southern and western sides. On the north western quadrant of the top of the barrow there is a 7m diameter, 1.5m deep hollow which is believed to have inspired the name of Wolf Pit. The base of the eastern side of the barrow, next to the road, has been eroded by a trackway and other roadside disturbance, revealing that the barrow is peat covered, and of a mainly earthen construction with some stone. Excavation of other barrows has shown that even where no encircling depression is discernible on the modern ground surface, ditches immediately around the outside of barrows frequently survive as infilled features, containing additional archaeological deposits.

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: 30162

Legacy System: RSM

End of official listing