Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Green Gairs round cairn

A Scheduled Monument in Alwinton, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.3454 / 55°20'43"N

Longitude: -2.1907 / 2°11'26"W

OS Eastings: 388000.954683

OS Northings: 605721.918871

OS Grid: NT880057

Mapcode National: GBR F64M.HN

Mapcode Global: WHB0D.BX11

Entry Name: Green Gairs round cairn

Scheduled Date: 6 September 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008985

English Heritage Legacy ID: 25069

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Alwinton

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Upper Coquetdale

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes the remains of a substantial round cairn of prehistoric
date situated on a north east facing slope below the summit of Green Gairs
Hill. The cairn, composed of earth and stone measures 12m in diameter and
stands to a maximum height of 1.8m. At the centre of the cairn there is a
hollow 3m in diameter, thought to be the result of unrecorded partial
excavation in the 19th century.

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.

Despite some damage to its centre, the round cairn on Green Gairs Hill
survives well and retains significant archaeological deposits. Evidence of the
manner of construction and the nature and duration of its use will be
preserved within and beneath the mound.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Charlton, D B, Day, J C, An Archaeological Survey of the MOD Training Area, Otterburn, (1977)

Source: Historic England

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