Ancient Monuments

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Bell barrow 670m east of Baylea Farm: one of a small group of barrows on Highwood Heath

A Scheduled Monument in East Stoke, Dorset

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Latitude: 50.668 / 50°40'4"N

Longitude: -2.1848 / 2°11'5"W

OS Eastings: 387032.864052

OS Northings: 85386.219399

OS Grid: SY870853

Mapcode National: GBR 21S.0GF

Mapcode Global: FRA 6799.QNQ

Entry Name: Bell barrow 670m east of Baylea Farm: one of a small group of barrows on Highwood Heath

Scheduled Date: 11 September 1963

Last Amended: 8 December 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007713

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21921

County: Dorset

Civil Parish: East Stoke

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Wool, East Burton and Combe Keynes

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument includes a prominent bell barrow, one of a small group of barrows
situated on Highwood Heath, an area of lowland heath close to the Dorset
The barrow mound is 2.8m high and 23m in diameter and has a surrounding berm
or platform c.3m wide. Beyond this is a ditch from which material was quarried
during the construction of the monument. This has become partially infilled
over the years but survives as a depression 1m deep and 3m wide. Surrounding
the ditch is an outer bank although this is not clearly defined.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Bell barrows, the most visually impressive form of round barrow, are funerary
monuments dating to the Early and Middle Bronze Age, with most examples
belonging to the period 1500-1100 BC. They occur either in isolation or in
round barrow cemeteries and were constructed as single or multiple mounds
covering burials, often in pits, and surrounded by an enclosure ditch. The
burials are frequently accompanied by weapons, personal ornaments and pottery
and appear to be those of aristocratic individuals, usually men. Bell barrows
(particularly multiple barrows) are rare nationally, with less than 250 known
examples, most of which are in Wessex. Their richness in terms of grave goods
provides evidence for chronological and cultural links amongst early
prehistoric communities over most of southern and eastern England as well as
providing an insight into their beliefs and social organisation. As a
particularly rare form of round barrow, all identified bell barrows would
normally be considered to be of national importance.

The bell barrow on Highwood Heath has survived well and contains
archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and
the landscape in which it was constructed. This barrow is one of a number to
survive on the heathland between the River Frome and the Dorset coast.

Source: Historic England

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