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Barrow and cairn cemetery on Black Hill, 490m north west of Crowcombe Park Gate

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Barrow and cairn cemetery on Black Hill, 490m north west of Crowcombe Park Gate

List entry Number: 1019381

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Somerset

District: West Somerset

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Holford

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 23-Jun-1975

Date of most recent amendment: 17-May-2000

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 32185

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

Reasons for Designation

The area of the Quantock Hills, although small in extent, is one of the few remaining expanses of open moorland in southern Britain. Its archaeological importance lies in the existence of a landscape displaying examples of monuments tracing the exploitation of the hills from the Bronze Age onwards. Well-preserved monuments from the Bronze Age and Iron Age, including round barrows, cairns, settlements, hillforts and a trackway, as well as later industrial remains, give insights into changes in the pattern of land use on the hills through time. These earthwork features are one of the key components of the Quantocks' broader landscape character. Round barrows and cairns on the Quantock Hills sometimes form mixed cemeteries which are concentrations of two or more cairns in close proximity to one or more round barrows. The cairns may be clearance cairns or funerary cairns. Clearance cairns, built with stone from the surrounding land surface to improve its use for agriculture, can sometimes define field plots. Funerary round cairns, covering single or multiple burials, are difficult to differentiate from clearance cairns without excavation, both being circular mounds. Clearance cairns were constructed from the Neolithic period (from c.3400 BC), although the majority of examples appear to be the result of field clearance which began during the earlier Bronze Age and continued into the later Bronze Age (2000-700 BC). Funerary cairns date to the Bronze Age. Round barrows are constructed as earthen or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, covering single or multiple burials. They also date to the Bronze Age, and often acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Most cemeteries developed over a considerable period of time, sometimes many centuries. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape. Their longevity and variation in size, content and associations provide important information on the variety of beliefs, social organisation, development of land use and agricultural practices amongst early prehistoric communities. Only a small number of round cairn cemeteries have been recorded on the Quantocks, although the original figure is likely to have been higher. A substantial proportion of surviving or partly surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

The barrow and cairn cemetery on Black Hill, 490m north west of Crowcombe Park Gate, survives well as a group despite some disturbance caused by unrecorded excavations, and will contain archaeological deposits and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed.

History

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

Details

The monument, which lies in three separate areas of protection, includes a Bronze Age cemetery containing four bowl barrows and a cairn. The cemetery is aligned east to west along a broad plateau on Black Hill in the western region of the Quantock Hills. Two of the bowl barrows form outliers to the core of the cemetery; one located 120m to the east and the other 100m to the west. Three of the bowl barrow mounds range in size from 8m to 13.5m in diameter and from 0.5m to about 1.5m high. The mound of the fourth bowl barrow, located 40m west of the cairn, has been hollowed resulting in an uneven central area ringed by a bank up to 1m high. A small tump is located within the bank. Several small heaps are located to the south and east of this bowl barrow which may be spoil from unrecorded excavations. The cairn mound has been disturbed and now has the appearance of an irregular circular bank 0.5m to 0.75m high, with an overall diameter of 13m. The bowl barrows each have a central depression which may have been caused by antiquarian excavations.

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.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Grinsell, L V, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaelogical & Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, , Vol. 113 pt1, (1969), 34
Grinsell, L V, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaelogical & Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, , Vol. 113 pt1, (1969), 33
Grinsell, L V, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaelogical & Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, , Vol. 113 pt1, (1969), 33
Grinsell, L V, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaelogical & Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, , Vol. 113 pt1, (1969), 33
Grinsell, L V, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaelogical & Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, , Vol. 113 pt1, (1969), 34

National Grid Reference: ST 14539 38227, ST 14643 38211, ST 14748 38203

Map

Map
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The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1019381 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 20-Nov-2017 at 12:03:03.

End of official listing