Round barrow 420m north of Rye House Farm


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1019595

Date first listed: 17-Jan-1969

Date of most recent amendment: 09-Feb-2001


Ordnance survey map of Round barrow 420m north of Rye House Farm
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This copy shows the entry on 17-Dec-2018 at 12:25:58.


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

County: North Yorkshire

District: Ryedale (District Authority)

Parish: Helmsley

National Grid Reference: SE 63347 82577


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

Reasons for Designation

Round barrows 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 mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often acted as a focus of 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 examples recorded nationally (many more have already been destroyed), occurring across most of Britain, including the Wessex area where it is often possible to classify them more closely, for example as bowl or bell barrows. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable variation in 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 being disturbed by cultivation the round barrow 420m north of Rye House Farm will contain archaeological information relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was built


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 top of a low rise on the eastern side of the River Rye, which forms a gentle north east to south west ridge. Another round barrow, the subject of a separate scheduling, also lies on this low ridge, 140m to the SSW. With the removal of intervening vegetation, the monument is thought to be intervisible with the line of three round barrows 1.6km to the north west and may also have been intervisible with the large Pockley Gates round barrow 1.5km to the NNE. The monument is sited on nearly level ground, sloping gently away both to the north west and south east. The barrow is thought to have been the origin of a flint arrow head recorded in 1905 and possibly a polished stone axe head found nearby sometime before 1963. In 1963 it was recorded as being 100ft (30.4m) in diameter and 1ft (0.3m) high and was under cultivation. It has continued to be ploughed regularly and now survives as an upstanding earthwork of paler and more stoney ground 17m in diameter and 0.3m high. Excavation of other examples of round barrows in the region have shown that even where no encircling depression is discernible on the modern ground surface, ditches immediately around the outside of the mound frequently survive as infilled features, containing additional archaeological deposits. A margin to allow for such an infilled ditch up to 3m wide around the original 27m diameter extent of the barrow is thus also included within the monument. Such excavations have also shown that archaeological remains can survive undisturbed under the plough soil. For instance the primary burial of a round barrow was typically placed in a pit cut into the original ground surface before the construction of the covering mound and secondary burials have also been found in pits cut into ditches encircling barrows.

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: 32708

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
McDonnell, J, A History of Helmsley Rievaulx and District, (1963)

End of official listing