Round cairn in High Plantation, 840m north east of Cockayne Lodge


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


Ordnance survey map of Round cairn in High Plantation, 840m north east of Cockayne Lodge
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

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 - 1019597 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 14-Oct-2019 at 14:03:32.


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

North Yorkshire
Ryedale (District Authority)
National Park:
National Grid Reference:
SE 61654 99324

Reasons for Designation

Round cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as stone mounds covering single or multiple burials. These burials may be placed within the mound in stone-lined compartments called cists. In some cases the cairn was surrounded by a ditch. Often occupying prominent locations, cairns are a major visual element in the modern landscape. They are a relatively common feature of the uplands and are the stone equivalent of the earthen round barrows of the lowlands. Their considerable variation in form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

Excavation of round cairns 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 round cairns were normally used for more than one burial and that the primary burial was frequently on or below the original ground surface, often with secondary burials located within the body of the mound. Most also 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. In the Bronze Age, many round cairns are thought to have acted as territorial markers in addition to their role as burial sites. The round cairn in High Plantation, 840m north east of Cockayne Lodge is a very well-preserved example of a small prominently placed cairn. Unlike most burial mounds in the area, it appears to have escaped excavation by 19th century antiquarians.


The monument includes the earthwork and associated buried remains of a prehistoric burial mound constructed mainly of stones on the southern edge of Bransdale Moor, immediately south of the drystone wall defining the northern boundary of High Plantation. The cairn is sited on level ground around 50m back from the break of slope between the plateau forming Bransdale Moor and the hillside down into the dale. From it there is a fine view down the length of Bransdale and the cairn would have formed a skyline feature when viewed from the rest of the moor to the north. Intervisibility of the monument with other cairns along Bransdale Ridge to the west and with the Three Howes round barrows on Rudland Rigg to the south east is partly obscured by trees within the plantation. The monument is also intervisible with a prehistoric standing stone, Cammon Stone, on Rudland Rigg 1.2km to the north east. The cairn is 11m in diameter, standing to 0.6m high with a 5m diameter flat or slightly concave top. It is mainly grassed over, but a small area of disturbance in the north east quadrant shows that the cairn is mainly built of stones, typically with 0.3m to 0.5m maximum dimension. Excavation of other examples of round cairns 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 2m wide around the cairn is thus also included within the monument.

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:
Legacy System:


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.

End of official listing

Your Contributions

Do you know more about this entry?

The following information has been contributed by users volunteering for our Enriching The List project. For small corrections to the List Entry please see our Minor Amendments procedure.

The information and images below are the opinion of the contributor, are not part of the official entry and do not represent the official position of Historic England. We have not checked that the contributions below are factually accurate. Please see our terms and conditions. If you wish to report an issue with a contribution or have a question please email [email protected].