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Round cairn cemetery at High Greens 460m south east of Brecken Howe

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 Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Round cairn cemetery at High Greens 460m south east of Brecken Howe

List entry Number: 1019446


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

County: North Yorkshire

District: Scarborough

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Darncombe-cum-Langdale End


Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 11-Oct-2000

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 34531

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

Round cairn cemeteries date to the Bronze Age. They comprise groups of cairns sited in close proximity to one another and take the form of stone mounds constructed to cover single or multiple burials. Contemporary or later `flat' graves may lie between individual cairns. Most cemeteries developed over a considerable period of time and they can exhibit considerable diversity of burial rite, plan and form. Occasionally they are associated with earlier long cairns. They may also be associated with clearance cairns - heaps of stones cleared from the adjacent ground surface to improve its quality for agricultural activities; these were also being constructed during the Bronze Age, although some examples are of later date. It may be impossible without excavation to distinguish between some burial and clearance cairns. Round cairn cemeteries occur throughout most of upland Britain; their distribution pattern complements that of contemporary lowland earthen round barrows. Often occupying prominent locations they are a major historic element in the modern landscape. Their diversity and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving or partly-surviving examples are considered worthy of preservation.

Despite disturbance by forestry ploughing, the round cairn cemetery at High Greens 460m south east of Brecken Howe has survived well. Significant information about the construction of the upstanding cairns and the burials placed beneath them will be preserved. Flat graves will survive in the area between the cairns. Evidence for earlier land use and the contemporary environment will also survive beneath the upstanding cairns. This is one of only a very few cairn cemeteries on the North York Moors, and provides a marked contrast to other Bronze Age burial monuments in this area which occur either singly, in small clusters or in widely dispersed groupings. As such, it will provide important insight into the development of ritual and funerary practice during the Bronze Age. The association with other nearby burial monuments as well as field systems and clearance cairns will also offer scope for the study of the distribution of human activity across the landscape during the prehistoric period.


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


The monument includes a round cairn cemetery in Langdale Forest, situated on level ground at the top of and overlooking the valley of Hipperley Beck to the east. The cemetery has ten burial cairns, six of which survive as upstanding features. Two cairns have been levelled by forestry ploughing, and a further two have been severely damaged by forestry activities so that they are only identifiable now as stony areas on the ground surface, although the burials which would have been placed beneath all four of these cairns are expected to survive as below ground features. The cemetery has a linear arrangement running approximately north west to south east, curving to the east in the centre. The cairns are arranged in two adjacent rows which are 10m-20m apart. The south western row has four visible cairns, but originally had seven and was approximately 150m long. The north eastern row has two visible cairns, but originally had three and was approximately 50m long. The burials which would have been placed in the area between the cairns are not visible, but will survive below the ground surface as buried features. The four upstanding cairns in the south western row each have a stony mound which stands up to 0.5m high and is 5m-7m in diameter. The upstanding cairns in the north eastern row have stony mounds which stand 0.4m and 0.6m high and are 3m and 6m in diameter; the larger mound is more northerly and has a hollow in the centre from partial excavation in the past. Formerly the cairns would have been up to 10m in diameter, but they have been reduced in size by forestry ploughing. The cairn cemetery lies in an area where there are many other prehistoric burial monuments as well as field systems and clearance cairns.

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
Spratt, D A , 'Prehistoric and Roman Archaeology in North East Yorkshire' in Prehistoric and Roman Archaeology of North East Yorkshire, , Vol. 87, (1993)
Spratt, D A , 'Prehistoric and Roman Archaeology in North East Yorkshire' in Prehistoric and Roman Archaeology of North East Yorkshire, , Vol. 87, (1993)
Title: Old Series Ordnance Survey 1:10560 Source Date: 1958 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

National Grid Reference: SE 91204 95672


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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 - 1019446 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 23-Sep-2018 at 02:08:53.

End of official listing