Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Cairn on Harland Edge

A Scheduled Monument in Brampton, Derbyshire

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Latitude: 53.2134 / 53°12'48"N

Longitude: -1.5627 / 1°33'45"W

OS Eastings: 429301.948502

OS Northings: 368574.380403

OS Grid: SK293685

Mapcode National: GBR 57Y.FRX

Mapcode Global: WHCD8.ZH1C

Entry Name: Cairn on Harland Edge

Scheduled Date: 26 October 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008604

English Heritage Legacy ID: 23328

County: Derbyshire

Civil Parish: Brampton

Traditional County: Derbyshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Derbyshire

Church of England Parish: Beeley St Anne

Church of England Diocese: Derby


The monument is located on a south west facing shelf below the crest of
Harland Edge which is in the area of the eastern gritstone moorlands of the
Peak District commonly known as the East Moors. It includes an ovoid gritstone
cairn, measuring 8.5m north west-south east by 6m, which is retained by a low
kerb of stones broken, to the north east and south west, by entrances. On
either side of these entrances, the kerbstones increase in height and
terminate in radially set portal stones which originally stood c.1m high.
Between the two entrances, within the interior of the cairn, is a roughly oval
shaped hollow which appears to have had a level floor and which measures c.6m
north east-south west by 3m. It is lined on the south side by a line of
gritstone orthostats with an average height of c.0.5m. It is not clear whether
this hollow and stone setting have always been open or whether they represent
the remains of a cist which was originally covered over. There has been no
documented excavation of the monument but the hollow may have been the site of
an unrecorded antiquarian delve. A Bronze Age date is assigned to the cairn on
the basis of its complex form and proximity to other burial cairns on Harland
Edge, and also its association with the extensive Bronze Age field systems
occurring below Harland Edge on Beeley Moor and Beeley Warren.

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

Round cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age
(c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as stone mounds 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, 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 provide
important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation
amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of
their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered
worthy of protection.

This particular cairn on Harland Edge exhibits an unusual form which includes
well preserved architectural features and illustrates well the diversity in
funerary practices associated with Bronze Age communities. Although there is a
possibility that the central part of cairn has been disturbed, the monument
appears otherwise intact and retains substantial archaeological remains. The
monument also forms part of a wider relict Bronze Age landscape which includes
other burial cairns and ceremonial and settlement evidence. It appears to be
the only burial cairn of exactly this type so far identified.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Barnatt, J, The Peak District Barrow Survey (1989), (1989)
Barnatt, J W, 'Derbyshire Archaeological Journal' in Bronze Age Remains on the East Moors of the Peak District, , Vol. 106, (1986), 64
Barnatt, J W, Peak District Barrow Survey, 1989, unpublished survey
Barnatt, John, (1993)

Source: Historic England

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