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Long mortuary enclosure and associated barrow 120m south of Rushey Weir

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: Long mortuary enclosure and associated barrow 120m south of Rushey Weir

List entry Number: 1021369

Location

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

County: Oxfordshire

District: Vale of White Horse

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Buckland

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 26-Nov-2004

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: 35544

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

Long mortuary enclosures are oblong-shaped enclosures up to 150m in length, surrounded by narrow, fairly straight ditches with slightly rounded corners, containing an open space edged by a perimeter bank set within the ditch. Characteristically there are two or more major causeways across the ditch which served as entrances. Most long mortuary enclosures are orientated within 45 degrees of an east-west alignment. Long mortuary enclosures are generally associated with human burials dated to the Early and Middle Neolithic periods (c.3200-2500 BC). There are approximately 35 examples recorded in England. The greatest concentration lies in Essex and Suffolk, but there are also examples along the Thames and in Warwickshire along the Avon; two isolated examples have been recorded in Northumberland. Long mortuary enclosures are very rare nationally and all surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

Round barrows date from the Late Neolithic to the Late Bronze Age, with most examples belonging to the period 2400-1500 BC. They were generally constructed as earthen rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple burials. They occur 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, occurring across most of Britain, and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection. Although nothing remains of the barrow mound, evidence of burial practice may survive. Round barrows are generally considered to have been constructed slightly later than long mortuary or causewayed enclosures: however, the location of the barrow in relation to the long mortuary enclosure suggests an association of some significance, and the proximity to each other of three different classes of monument associated with funerary practices lends additional importance to the group. Although all visible remains of the long mortuary enclosure and barrow 120m south of Rushey Weir have been levelled by ploughing, the ditches survive well. The location of the monuments on low lying land beside the River Thames suggests that they may contain well preserved waterlogged organic deposits, material that will provide evidence of the nature of the surrounding landscape, and of the uses made of the enclosure during its lifetime.

History

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

Details

The monument includes the remains of a sub-rectangular ditched enclosure identified as a long mortuary enclosure, and also of a circular feature at its south east corner, considered to be a round barrow. The site lies immediately south of the River Thames, about 120m from Rushey Weir. Although the enclosure is likely to have been constructed with an internal bank, and the barrow with an internal mound, nothing of these now remain visible on the ground. However, the enclosure and barrow ditches, and features within the enclosure, are clearly visible from the air as cropmarks, and were photographed and identified at the same time as a Neolithic causewayed enclosure, the subject of a separate scheduling, which lies about 70m to the north west. The long mortuary enclosure is orientated east-west and takes an irregular rectangular form measuring approximately 90m by 34m, slightly narrower at the west than the east end, and with its maximum width towards the middle. The boundary ditch appears to be broken in several places, but the most consistently clear entrance lies 20m from the western end of the north side, facing the causewayed enclosure to the north west; there may also have been an entrance at the east end. A rectangular feature measuring about 6m by 3m lies across the centre of the enclosure at its widest point, orientated north-south; there is also a scatter of small features, probably pits, across the interior. The barrow lies about 25m from the south east corner, and measures about 12m in diameter.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 3 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Selected Sources

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

National Grid Reference: SU 32312 99912

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 - 1021369 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 24-Nov-2017 at 04:20:21.

End of official listing