Ancient Monuments

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Prehistoric platform cairn 365m north of Furswain Farm

A Scheduled Monument in St. Cleer, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.5187 / 50°31'7"N

Longitude: -4.5061 / 4°30'21"W

OS Eastings: 222436.749001

OS Northings: 71763.220112

OS Grid: SX224717

Mapcode National: GBR ND.JLCK

Mapcode Global: FRA 17GP.DBC

Entry Name: Prehistoric platform cairn 365m north of Furswain Farm

Scheduled Date: 28 March 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008180

English Heritage Legacy ID: 15236

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: St. Cleer

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: St Cleer

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes a prehistoric funerary platform cairn situated near two
other broadly contemporary cairns on the summit of a small hill east of the
River Fowey valley on south-east Bodmin Moor.
The cairn is visible as a largely turf-covered platform of heaped rubble, 15m
in diameter and up to 0.3m high above the surrounding thick peaty turf which
partly masks the cairn's periphery. Unrecorded antiquarian excavation has
produced several shallow hollows, up to 0.1m deep, within the surface of the
platform. This cairn is centred 77m south-east and 68m south of two further
round cairns, together forming a loose grouping about the hill's summit.

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

Bodmin Moor, the largest of the Cornish granite uplands, has long been
recognised to have exceptional preservation of archaeological remains. The
Moor has been the subject of detailed archaeological survey and is one of the
best recorded upland landscapes in England. The extensive relict landscapes of
prehistoric, medieval and post-medieval date provide direct evidence for human
exploitation of the Moor from the earliest prehistoric period onwards. The
well-preserved and often visible relationship between settlement sites, field
systems, ceremonial and funerary monuments as well as later industrial remains
provides significant insights into successive changes in the pattern of land
use through time. Platform cairns are funerary monuments covering single or
multiple burials and dating to the Early Bronze Age (c.2000-1600 BC). They
were constructed as low flat-topped mounds of stone rubble up to 40m in
external diameter. Some examples have other features, including peripheral
banks and internal mounds, constructed on this platform. A kerb of edge-set
stones sometimes bounds the edges of the platform, bank or mound, or all
three. Platform cairns occur as isolated monuments, in small groups, or in
cairn cemeteries. In the latter instances they are normally found alongside
cairns of other types. Although no precise figure is available, current
evidence indicates that there are under 250 known examples of this monument
class nationally. As a rare monument type exhibiting considerable variation in
form, a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of

This platform cairn on Furswain Farm has survived well despite some limited
disturbance from antiquarian investigation. The cairn's mound, internal
deposits and buried land surface will survive substantially intact and the
thick peat covering the mound's periphery will also preserve environmental
deposits contemporary with the cairn's construction and use. The proximity of
the cairn to the round cairns on the summit of this hill demonstrates well the
nature and diversity of funerary practices during the Bronze Age.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Trahair, J E R, 'Cornish Archaeology' in A survey of cairns on Bodmin Moor, , Vol. 17, (1978)
consulted 1992, Carter, A./CAU/RCHME, 1:2500 AP plot and field trace for SX 2271,
consulted 1992, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN 1239.3,
Title: 1:10000 Ordnance Survey Map; SX 27 SW
Source Date: 1982

Source: Historic England

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