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Kerbed platform cairn on Wingletang Down, 160m north west of Horse Point

A Scheduled Monument in St. Agnes, Isles of Scilly

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Latitude: 49.8837 / 49°53'1"N

Longitude: -6.3425 / 6°20'32"W

OS Eastings: 88173.370476

OS Northings: 7212.308203

OS Grid: SV881072

Mapcode National: GBR BXQZ.PNQ

Mapcode Global: VGYCB.05TZ

Entry Name: Kerbed platform cairn on Wingletang Down, 160m north west of Horse Point

Scheduled Date: 7 October 1976

Last Amended: 4 October 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1009263

English Heritage Legacy ID: 15312

County: Isles of Scilly

Civil Parish: St. Agnes

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Isles of Scilly

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes a prehistoric kerbed platform cairn incorporating
natural outcrops in its periphery and situated on the south western edge of
the southern headland of St Agnes in the Isles of Scilly.
The platform cairn survives with a low mound of heaped rubble measuring 6m
east-west by 3.5m north-south, with a flattened top up to 0.4m high. The mound
extends north from a cluster of three small, rounded, natural granite outcrops
which define its southern perimeter and continue a further 5.5m to the south,
rising up to 1m high. The edge of the mound's flattened upper surface is
defined by a kerb of at least three spaced slabs on its north west, north and
east sides. The largest, north western, kerb slab is edge-set and measures 1m
long and 0.3m high, while the eastern slab has fallen outwards from an
edge-set position.
This cairn is part of a group containing at least 44 cairns of various types
dispersed about the heathland and abundant granite outcrops of Wingletang
Down, the broad southern peninsula of St Agnes. Prehistoric field systems
border the northern edges of the Down, partly incorporating several cairns
towards the north east edge of this cairn group. Another large and diverse
cairn group occupies the southern part of Gugh, from 450m north east of
Wingletang Down.

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

The Isles of Scilly, the westernmost of the granite masses of south west
England, contain a remarkable abundance and variety of archaeological remains
from over 4000 years of human activity. The remote physical setting of the
islands, over 40km beyond the mainland in the approaches to the English
Channel, has lent a distinctive character to those remains, producing many
unusual features important for our broader understanding of the social
development of early communities.
Throughout the human occupation there has been a gradual submergence of the
islands' land area, providing a stimulus to change in the environment and its
exploitation. This process has produced evidence for responses to such change
against an independent time-scale, promoting integrated studies of
archaeological, environmental and linguistic aspects of the islands'
The islands' archaeological remains demonstrate clearly the gradually
expanding size and range of contacts of their communities. By the post-
medieval period (from AD 1540), the islands occupied a nationally strategic
location, resulting in an important concentration of defensive works
reflecting the development of fortification methods and technology from the
mid 16th to the 20th centuries. An important and unusual range of post-
medieval monuments also reflects the islands' position as a formidable hazard
for the nation's shipping in the western approaches.
The exceptional preservation of the archaeological remains on the islands has
long been recognised, producing an unusually full and detailed body of
documentation, including several recent surveys.
Platform cairns are funerary monuments of Early Bronze Age date (c.2000-1600
BC). They were constructed as low flat-topped mounds of stone rubble, up to
40m in external diameter though usually considerably smaller, covering single
or multiple burials. Some examples have other features, including peripheral
banks and internal mounds constructed on the platform. A kerb of slabs or
edge-set stones sometimes bounds the edge of the platform, and a peripheral
bank or mound if present. Platform cairns can occur as isolated monuments, in
small groups or in cairn cemeteries. In cemeteries they are normally found
alongside cairns of other types.
Platform cairns form a significant proportion of the 387 surviving cairns on
the Isles of Scilly; this is unusual in comparison with the mainland. All
surviving examples on the Isles of Scilly are considered worthy of protection.

This platform cairn near Horse Point has survived well, with no evident or
recorded disturbance apart from the natural subsidence of its eastern kerb
slab. The incorporation of natural outcrops into the mound is a distinctive
feature found in certain other cairns on the Isles of Scilly but unusual and
rare nationally. The presence of this cairn in a dispersed group containing
various other classes of cairn shows the diversity of funerary activity during
the Bronze Age. The relationships between this cairn group, the nearby
prehistoric field systems and the topography on St Agnes demonstrate well the
nature of land use among prehistoric communities and the organisation of
funerary and farming activities.

Source: Historic England


consulted 1993, Waters, A./CAU, AM 107s for Cornwall SMR entries for PRN 7010; 7013; 7019, (1988)
consulted 1993, Waters, A./CAU, AM 107s for Cornwall SMR entries for PRN 7011; 7015; 7016; 7018, (1988)
consulted 1993, Waters, A./CAU, AM 107s for Cornwall SMR entries for PRN 7020; 7056; 7057; 7059, (1988)
Title: 1:10000 Ordnance Survey Map, SV 80 NE
Source Date: 1980

Source: Historic England

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