Two cairns on Great Hill, 470m south and 750m south west of Quantock Farm

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1020364

Date first listed: 04-Jan-1972

Date of most recent amendment: 24-Nov-2000

Map

Ordnance survey map of Two cairns on Great Hill, 470m south and 750m south west of Quantock Farm
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Location

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

County: Somerset

District: West Somerset (District Authority)

Parish: Crowcombe

National Grid Reference: ST 15657 36251, ST 15817 36503

Summary

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 cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as earthen or rubble mounds, the latter predominating in areas of upland Britain where such raw materials were locally available in abundance. Round cairns may cover single or multiple burials and are sometimes surrounded by an outer ditch. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major visual element in the modern landscape. 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. Twelve round cairns have been recorded on the Quantocks, although the original figure is likely to have been higher. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

Despite some disturbance to the two cairns on Great Hill, 470m south and 750m south west of Quantock Farm, they survive well 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 two separate areas of protection, includes two Bronze Age cairns aligned broadly north east to south west on Great Hill in the western region of the Quantock Hills. The cairn to the north east is located on the broad summit of the hill and is formed of a central mound enclosed by a narrow berm with an outer bank. The mound is approximately 0.75m high and 11m in diameter; the berm and bank together measure 10m wide, giving the cairn an overall diameter of 21m. The second cairn is located 300m to the south west of the former and occupies a west facing promontory. It has an irregular mound 28m in diameter and approximately 2m high. Both cairn mounds have been disturbed, which may be an indication of partial excavation in antiquity.

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: 33703

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Grinsell, L V, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaelogical & Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, (1969), 29
Grinsell, L V, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaelogical & Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, (1969), 29

End of official listing