Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Round barrow on south side of Brendon Common

A Scheduled Monument in Brendon and Countisbury, Devon

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Latitude: 51.1897 / 51°11'22"N

Longitude: -3.7535 / 3°45'12"W

OS Eastings: 277557.920179

OS Northings: 144844.55438

OS Grid: SS775448

Mapcode National: GBR L4.5BY7

Mapcode Global: VH5JZ.WCKB

Entry Name: Round barrow on south side of Brendon Common

Scheduled Date: 28 July 1958

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1004569

English Heritage Legacy ID: DV 711

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Brendon and Countisbury

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Brendon St Brendon

Church of England Diocese: Exeter


A round cairn on Withycombe Ridge 1720m south east of Dry Bridge.

Source: Historic England


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 10 November 2015. 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 a round cairn situated on the prominent Withycombe Ridge on the upper south facing slopes of the valley of the Hoccombe Combe. The cairn survives as a circular stony mound measuring up to 6.2m in diameter and 0.6m high. It is clearly visible on aerial photographs.

Other archaeological remains in the surrounding are the subject of separate schedulings.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Exmoor is the most easterly of the three main upland areas in the south western peninsula of England. In contrast to the other two areas, Dartmoor and Bodmin Moor, there has been no history of antiquarian research and little excavation of Exmoor monuments. However, survey work has confirmed a comparable richness of archaeological remains, with evidence of human exploitation and occupation from the Mesolithic period to the present day. Many of the field monuments surviving on Exmoor date from the later prehistoric period, examples including stone settings, stone alignments, standing stones, and burial mounds (barrows or cairns). Round cairns are funerary monuments dating from the Late Neolithic period to the Late Bronze Age, with most examples belonging to the period 2400-1500BC. They were constructed as rubble mounds 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. Over 370 barrows or cairns, varying in diameter from 2m to 35m, have been recorded on Exmoor, with many of these found on or close to the summits of the three east-west ridges which cross the moor - the southern escarpment, the central ridge, and the northern ridge. Individual cairns and groups may also be found on lower lying ground and hillslopes. Those which occupy prominent locations form a major visual element in the modern landscape. Their longevity as a monument type can provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period.

The round cairn on Withycombe Ridge, 1720m south east of Dry Bridge, survives well and given its prominent and somewhat isolated location has received limited disturbance. It will contain important archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, use, funerary practices, territorial significance and general landscape context.

Source: Historic England


PastScape Monument No:-35300

Source: Historic England

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