Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Bowl barrow 350m south-west of Harley Bushes, Bishopstone Downs

A Scheduled Monument in Bishopstone, Swindon

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Latitude: 51.5283 / 51°31'41"N

Longitude: -1.6084 / 1°36'30"W

OS Eastings: 427264.850323

OS Northings: 181116.972358

OS Grid: SU272811

Mapcode National: GBR 5XD.266

Mapcode Global: VHC15.2VL8

Entry Name: Bowl barrow 350m south-west of Harley Bushes, Bishopstone Downs

Scheduled Date: 11 November 1992

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1009460

English Heritage Legacy ID: 19030

County: Swindon

Civil Parish: Bishopstone

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Bishopstone with Hinton Parva

Church of England Diocese: Bristol


The monument includes a small bowl barrow set on a false crest just below the
edge of a gentle north facing slope. The barrow mound survives as a low
circular mound 13m in diameter and up to 0.6m high. Although no longer
visible at ground level, a ditch, from which material was quarried during the
construction of the monument, surrounds the mound. This has become infilled
over the years but survives as a buried feature c.2m wide.

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 cultivation of the site in the past, the bowl barrow south-west of
Harley Bushes survives comparatively well; it lies in close proximity to a
linear group of three barrows some 25m to the east, the possible relationship
to this group increases the importance of the site. The barrow will contain
archaeological and environmental evidence relating both to the monument and to
the landscape in which it was constructed.

Source: Historic England

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