Ancient Monuments

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Bowl barrow 70m north of Green Street and east of the Avebury henge monument

A Scheduled Monument in Avebury, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.4351 / 51°26'6"N

Longitude: -1.8333 / 1°49'59"W

OS Eastings: 411682.069188

OS Northings: 170695.392128

OS Grid: SU116706

Mapcode National: GBR 3VD.Z67

Mapcode Global: VHB45.56N4

Entry Name: Bowl barrow 70m north of Green Street and east of the Avebury henge monument

Scheduled Date: 15 August 1949

Last Amended: 27 June 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008105

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21738

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Avebury

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire


The monument includes a bowl barrow set on a west facing slope 70m north of
Green Street and east of the Avebury henge monument. The barrow forms part of
a dispersed round barrow cemetery containing at least ten barrows.
The barrow survives as a low earthwork mound which has been spread by
cultivation to a diameter of 21m and which stands up to 1.1m high. This area
includes what was recorded in the 19th century as a 15m diameter barrow mound
which has spread across the surrounding quarry ditch from which material was
taken during the mound's construction. The ditch survives beneath the spread
mound as a buried feature c.3m wide.
The barrow was partially excavated in 1849 by Merewether who found two shallow
sarsen cists which contained burnt bones. These burials, which were in the
upper part of the mound and were not centrally placed, are considered to be
later insertions. At the time of the excavation, the surface of the mound was
littered with iron nails and 84 Roman coins were found buried immediately
below the turf (on its south east side). According to records from the mid-
19th century, this was the north western of two barrows which were close
together and aligned north west to south east. No evidence of this second
barrow survives above ground but there may be buried remains beneath the
present ground surface.

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

A small number of areas in southern England appear to have acted as foci for
ceremonial and ritual activity during the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age
periods. Two of the best known and earliest recognised, with references in the
17th century, are around Avebury and Stonehenge, now jointly designated as a
World Heritage Site. In the Avebury area, the henge monument itself, the West
Kennet Avenue, the Sanctuary, West Kennet long barrow, Windmill Hill
causewayed enclosure and the enigmatic Silbury Hill are well-known. Whilst the
other Neolithic long barrows, the many Bronze Age round barrows and other
associated sites are less well-known, together they define one of the richest
and most varied areas of Neolithic and Bronze Age ceremonial and ritual
monuments in the country. Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age
(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 and occasionally associated
with earlier long barrows. Where investigation beyond the round barrows has
occurred, contemporary or later `flat' burials between the barrow mounds have
often been revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland
England with a marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases they are
clustered around other important contemporary monuments, as is the case both
here and at Stonehenge. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major
historic element in the modern landscape, while their diversity and their
longevity as a monument type provide important information on the variety of
beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. All
examples are considered worthy of protection.

The bowl barrow 70m north of Green Street survives as a visible monument
which, despite having been reduced by cultivation and partially excavated,
will contain archaeological and environmental remains relating to the monument
and the landscape in which it was built.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Smith, A C, Ancient Wiltshire, (1885)
Merewether, J, 'Proceedings Archaeological Institute Salisbury' in Note, , Vol. 86 No 10, (1849)
SU 17 SW 11, RCHM(E), Tumulus, (1975)
SU 17 SW 624, CAO, Two very low barrows, (1989)
Williams, S M, WI 306, (1983)

Source: Historic England

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