Ancient Monuments

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Three bowl barrows 550m NNW of Gwenter Farm forming part of a round barrow cemetery on Goonhilly Downs

A Scheduled Monument in St. Keverne, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.0232 / 50°1'23"N

Longitude: -5.1597 / 5°9'35"W

OS Eastings: 173767.9231

OS Northings: 18455.9457

OS Grid: SW737184

Mapcode National: GBR Z7.SPRJ

Mapcode Global: FRA 082Y.9NM

Entry Name: Three bowl barrows 550m NNW of Gwenter Farm forming part of a round barrow cemetery on Goonhilly Downs

Scheduled Date: 23 March 1970

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1004321

English Heritage Legacy ID: CO 676

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: St. Keverne

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Ruan Minor

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument, which falls into three areas of protection, includes three bowl barrows, situated on the south eastern side of Goonhilly Downs, and forms part of a large and dispersed round barrow cemetery. The barrows survive as circular steep sided flat-topped mounds surrounded by buried quarry ditches from which the construction material was derived. The western mound measures 18m in diameter and 1m high with a central depression, and a hollow to the east. A modern concrete pillar marked 'N.C.C. T. TUMULI' is fixed near the top. The central barrow stands up to 11m in diameter and 0.8m high. A number of stones from a retaining kerb are visible and on the top there is a recumbent, probably 19th century, granite boundary stone incised with the letter 'G' on its upper surface. The eastern barrow is 10.5m in diameter and 0.8m high with a slightly hollowed centre. All three barrows lie on the boundary between the parishes of Grade and St Keverne and were first recorded in the late-19th century by Thomas.
Other barrows which form part of the round barrow cemetery are the subject of separate schedulings.

Sources: HER:-
PastScape Monument No:-426656

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Bowl barrows, the most numerous form of round barrow, 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 or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Often superficially similar, although differing widely in size, they exhibit regional variations in form and a diversity of burial practices. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable variation of 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. Despite partial early excavation, the three bowl barrows 550m NNW of Gwenter Farm forming part of a round barrow cemetery on Goonhilly Downs survive comparatively well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to their construction, relative chronologies, territorial significance, social organisation, ritual and funerary practices and overall landscape context.

Source: Historic England

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