Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Two kerbed cairns on Trendrine Hill

A Scheduled Monument in Zennor, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.195 / 50°11'42"N

Longitude: -5.5339 / 5°32'2"W

OS Eastings: 147878.165028

OS Northings: 38754.414436

OS Grid: SW478387

Mapcode National: GBR DXQ5.7Z7

Mapcode Global: VH12L.1C9C

Entry Name: Two kerbed cairns on Trendrine Hill

Scheduled Date: 27 April 1970

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1004341

English Heritage Legacy ID: CO 706

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: Zennor

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Zennor

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes two kerbed cairns, situated at the summit of the prominent coastal Trendrine Hill, with far reaching views across Mussel and Carn Naun Points. The cairns survive as closely-spaced circular stony mounds. The northern mound is up to 20m in diameter and 2.5m high with traces of a retaining kerb. An Ordnance Survey triangulation pillar has been placed at its summit. This is excluded from the scheduling, but the ground beneath the pillar is included.

The southern cairn is approximately 12m in diameter but has a well-defined kerb of large stones up to 1.3m high. Several other large stones within this kerb, some upright and some recumbent, could be an inner kerb or chamber, and within this is a further possible cist. This second cairn is close to the parish boundary wall.

Sources: HER:-
PastScape Monument No:-423156

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Kerbed cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as stone mounds defined by an outer kerb of upright stones or walling 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, kerbed 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 provides important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period. Despite re-use as the base for a triangulation pillar, the two kerbed cairns on Trendrine Hill survive 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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