Ancient Monuments

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Group of ring ditches 400yds (360m) north west of Great Brooks End Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Birchington, Kent

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.3708 / 51°22'14"N

Longitude: 1.2867 / 1°17'12"E

OS Eastings: 628860.622344

OS Northings: 168649.818062

OS Grid: TR288686

Mapcode National: GBR VYJ.VJR

Mapcode Global: VHLG5.8T31

Entry Name: Group of ring ditches 400yds (360m) NW of Great Brooks End Farm

Scheduled Date: 28 April 1975

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1004207

English Heritage Legacy ID: KE 270

County: Kent

Civil Parish: Birchington

Built-Up Area: Margate

Traditional County: Kent

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Kent

Summary

Ring ditches, linear ditches and pits 387m north-west of The Red House

Source: Historic England

Details

This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 19 June 2014. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes ring ditches, linear ditches and pits surviving as buried remains recorded as crop marks on aerial photographs. It is situated on a low-lying south-west facing slope north of Brooksend Stream near Birchington.

There are at least nine ring ditches, varying from 11m to 28m in diameter. At least one of these is a double ring ditch. The ring ditches are considered to be the buried remains of a Bronze Age barrow cemetery. The ditches are quarry ditches, from which material to construct the barrow mounds was originally derived. Two of the ring ditches are unusual in that they are linked by linear features or ditches. To the west side of the constraint area are several Second World War slit trenches from a military exercise, forming sharp zig-zag patterns running broadly north-east to south-west. There are also several other linear features or ditches, including part of a large rectilinear enclosure to the west and part of a possible trackway to the north. The buried remains of pits are evident as crop marks scattered across the site. These may be associated with prehistoric or Roman occupation.

The site was recorded as part of the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England (RCHME) Kent Mapping Project carried out in 1986-7. This produced 1:10,000 scale depictions of crop marks identified on oblique and vertical aerial photographs taken across Kent.

Further archaeological remains, such as ring ditches and rectilinear enclosures, survive in the vicinity of this site but are not included because they have not been formally assessed.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They comprise closely-spaced groups of up to 30 round barrows - rubble or earthen mounds covering single or multiple burials. Most cemeteries developed over a considerable period of time, often many centuries, and in some cases acted as a focus for burials as late as the early medieval period. They exhibit considerable diversity of burial rite, plan and form, frequently including several different types of round barrow, occasionally associated with earlier long barrows. Where large scale investigation has been undertaken around them, contemporary or later "flat" burials between the barrow mounds have often been revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland Britain, with a marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases, they are clustered around other important contemporary monuments such as henges. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape, whilst their diversity and their longevity as a monument type provide important information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities.

The ring ditches, linear ditches and pits 387m north-west of The Red House have not been excavated and will retain potential for further archaeological investigation, which will provide information regarding the exact nature of the archaeological remains. The site will contain significant archaeological and environmental information relating to the prehistoric occupation and management of the landscape in this part of Kent.

The linear ditches include Second World War slit trenches from a military exercise. The other linear features and pits are thought to be associated with prehistoric or Roman occupation.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
Kent HER TR26NE25. NMR TR26NE25. PastScape 466930,
Kent OS Maps (1:2500): 1894, 1896, 1907 and 1936,

Source: Historic England

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