Four bowl barrows on Bursdon Moor, 270m north west of Summerville Cross

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1019258

Date first listed: 13-Sep-2000

Map

Ordnance survey map of Four bowl barrows on Bursdon Moor, 270m north west of Summerville Cross
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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Location

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

County: Devon

District: Torridge (District Authority)

Parish: Hartland

National Grid Reference: SS 26790 20014, SS 26809 20094, SS 26878 19945, SS 27008 20003

Summary

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 reduction in height through cultivation, and disturbance through partial excavation, the four bowl barrows on Bursdon Moor, 270m north west of Summerville Cross survive comparatively well and will contain archaeological and environmental information relating to the monument and its surrounding landscape. Other contemporary monuments are visible from this barrow group.

History

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

Details

This monument, which falls into four separate areas of protection, includes four bowl barrows situated on a prominent upland ridge known as Bursdon Moor, with commanding views to the coast and Lundy Island. They form part of a dispersed group of barrows. The westernmost barrow survives as a circular flat-topped mound 26m in diameter and 0.9m high. The surrounding quarry ditch from which material to construct the mound was derived is preserved as a buried feature approximately 3m wide. The mound has been cut by a central depression 3.2m long, 1.1m wide and 0.2m deep. The northernmost barrow survives as a circular mound 22.8m in diameter and 0.7m high, of irregular profile and with an elongated depression on the western side measuring 5.2m long, 4m wide and up to 0.3m deep. The surrounding quarry ditch is visible on the north west side, and partially to the north, where it measures 3.6m wide and 0.1m deep. Elsewhere, it is preserved as a buried feature. The easternmost mound lies on a scarp edge and survives as a circular mound 19.8m in diameter and 0.6m high. It is also of irregular profile and the quarry ditch survives as a buried feature approximately 3m wide. The southernmost barrow has a circular mound 22.8m in diameter and 0.5m high. It is surrounded by a quarry ditch visible on the western side where it measures 3.6m wide and 0.2m deep, although elsewhere it survives as a buried feature. There is a central depression in the mound measuring 4.2m square and 0.2m deep. The upcast from this has been placed to the south west in a roughly oval bank measuring 2.1m long, 1.3m wide and 0.3m high.

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.

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 34247

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Other
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS21NE513, (1987)
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS22SE30, (1987)
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS22SE31, (1987)
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS22SE32, (1987)

End of official listing