Ancient Monuments

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A bowl barrow on Whiteleaf Hill, 90m north of Whiteleaf Cross

A Scheduled Monument in Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire

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Latitude: 51.7295 / 51°43'46"N

Longitude: -0.8113 / 0°48'40"W

OS Eastings: 482195.027222

OS Northings: 204086.263502

OS Grid: SP821040

Mapcode National: GBR D3W.KPM

Mapcode Global: VHDVJ.WSGK

Entry Name: A bowl barrow on Whiteleaf Hill, 90m north of Whiteleaf Cross

Scheduled Date: 26 March 1934

Last Amended: 12 October 1992

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1009355

English Heritage Legacy ID: 19048

County: Buckinghamshire

Civil Parish: Princes Risborough

Built-Up Area: Princes Risborough

Traditional County: Buckinghamshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Buckinghamshire

Church of England Parish: Monks Risborough

Church of England Diocese: Oxford


The monument includes a bowl barrow situated on the western edge of Whiteleaf
Hill chalk escarpment. The barrow mound has been disturbed but survives as a
low mound 18m in diameter and up to 0.5m high. The whole centre of the mound
is hollowed to a depth of 0.4m giving a dished appearance, probably as the
result of some early exploration of the mound. Secondary disturbances, in the
form of two collapsed and turf covered trenches 12m long and 2m wide, cross
the centre of the mound at right angles to each other, splitting it into four
equal segments. This suggests that the barrow has been subjected to
archaeological investigation at some time in the past, though there appears to
be no record of this. Surrounding the mound are traces of a ditch from which
material for the mound was quarried during the construction of the monument.
This survives around the north and south sides as a shallow earthwork 3m wide
and 0.3m deep and as a buried feature elsewhere.

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

Bowl barrows, the most numerous form of round barrow, are funerary monuments
dating from the Late Neolithic period to the Late Bronze Age, with most
examples belonging to the period 2400-1500 BC. They were constructed as
earthen or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple
burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often
acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Often superficially similar,
although differing widely in size, they exhibit regional variations in form
and a diversity of burial practices. There are over 10,000 surviving bowl
barrows recorded nationally (many more have already been destroyed), occurring
across most of lowland Britain. Often occupying prominent locations, they are
a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable
variation of form and longevity as a monument type provide important
information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisations amongst early
prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period
and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of

Despite disturbance to the central area of the barrow mound, much of the round
barrow 90m north of Whiteleaf Cross still survives comparatively well and
will contain important archaeological remains. Environmental material
relating to the landscape in which the monument was constructed may also
survive sealed on the old land surface beneath the barrow mound. The close
proximity of other monuments of a similar period add to the significance of
the site, and give an indication of the intensity with which the area was
exploited during the Bronze Age period.

Source: Historic England


Aerial Photograph,

Source: Historic England

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