Ancient Monuments

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Three Prehistoric clearance cairns 885m north-west of Wardbrook Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Linkinhorne, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.5359 / 50°32'9"N

Longitude: -4.4752 / 4°28'30"W

OS Eastings: 224687.430433

OS Northings: 73609.810756

OS Grid: SX246736

Mapcode National: GBR NF.HN8V

Mapcode Global: FRA 17JN.0BK

Entry Name: Three Prehistoric clearance cairns 885m north-west of Wardbrook Farm

Scheduled Date: 7 August 1992

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008821

English Heritage Legacy ID: 15123

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: Linkinhorne

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Linkinhorne

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes three large Prehistoric clearance cairns, part of a
dispersed cairnfield of ten similar cairns including a small funerary round
cairn, situated near extensive Prehistoric field systems, linear boundaries,
hut circles and cairns on the lower western slope of the Langstone Downs on SE
Bodmin Moor.
The three cairns form a triangular arrangement; the two larger cairns, both
markedly oval, are situated 13.5m apart on a NE-SW axis with the third, near
circular cairn 6m SE of the south-western cairn. All survive with mounds of
well consolidated heaped rubble, largely turf-covered with few exposures of
their stone content. The north-eastern cairn in this monument measures 11m
east-west by 4m north-south and rises 0.6m high. The south-western cairn
measures 7.5m NW-SE by 5m NE-SW and rises 0.5m high. The south-eastern cairn
measures 4m NW-SE by 3m NE-SW and rises 0.3m high, with a shallow depression,
0.75m in diameter and 0.1m deep, in the top almost certainly resulting from an
early antiquarian exploration.
The three cairns included in this monument are situated at the south-eastern
end of the larger dispersed group of cairns which is arranged in a horseshoe-
shaped curve encompassing 0.75 hectare of gently sloping stone-free land. A
large circular cairn at the northern end of the group, beyond the area of this
monument, is of sufficient size and form to suggest a funerary function.
Prehistoric field boundaries and cleared plots, incorporating other clearance
cairns, extend to within 25m of this group on its SE, east and north sides.

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. Stone alignments or stone rows consist of upright stones
set in a single line, or in two or more parallel lines, up to several hundred
metres in length. They are often sited close to prehistoric burial monuments,
such as small cairns and cists, and to ritual monuments, such as stone
circles, and are therefore considered to have had an important ceremonial
function. The seven stone alignments known on Bodmin Moor date from the Late
Neolithic to Early Bronze Age periods (c.2400-1600 BC) and provide rare
evidence of ceremonial and ritual practices on the Moor during these periods.
Due to their rarity and longevity as a monument type, all examples that are
not extensively damaged will be considered nationally important.

These three cairns have survived well, with only minor disturbance evident in
the smaller cairn. The close proximity of the cairnfield containing these
cairns to extensive Prehistoric field systems, settlement sites and other
groups of cairns and its integration with them indicates their broad
contemporaneity, demonstrating well the nature of agricultural practices and
organisation of land use during the Bronze Age.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Bradley, R, The Prehistoric Settlement of Britain, (1978)
Trahair, J E R, 'Cornish Archaeology' in A survey of cairns on Bodmin Moor, , Vol. 17, (1978)
consulted 9/1991, Carter, A./RCHME, 1:2500 AP transcriptions for SX 2473 SX 2474 SX 2573,
consulted 9/1991, Cornwall SMR entries for PRN 1398 (NW edge);1274 (SE edge);1287,
Qualification consulted 9/1991, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN 1264,

Source: Historic England

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