Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Bowl barrow on Arreton Down

A Scheduled Monument in Arreton, Isle of Wight

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Latitude: 50.6822 / 50°40'55"N

Longitude: -1.2379 / 1°14'16"W

OS Eastings: 453935.839867

OS Northings: 87226.501718

OS Grid: SZ539872

Mapcode National: GBR 9D3.5V1

Mapcode Global: FRA 8798.MJS

Entry Name: Bowl barrow on Arreton Down

Scheduled Date: 16 April 1980

Last Amended: 2 February 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1010009

English Heritage Legacy ID: 22026

County: Isle of Wight

Civil Parish: Arreton

Traditional County: Hampshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Isle of Wight

Church of England Parish: Arreton St George

Church of England Diocese: Portsmouth


The monument includes a bowl barrow on the upper slope of a south facing
hillside in an area of chalk downland with views to the south. This barrow was
originally one of at least four on Gallows Hill and Arreton Down, only two of
which now remain.
The barrow has a mound which measures c.13m in diameter. The mound is 0.5m
high when measured from the south side, but hardly visible from the uphill
north side. Surrounding the mound is a ditch from which material was quarried
during its construction. This has become infilled over the years and can no
longer be seen at ground level but survives as a buried feature c.2m wide.
The barrow, which appears to be incorporated into a lynchet, was reputedly
opened in 1853 by Kell and Wilkins.

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 the possibility of it having been partially excavated, the bowl barrow
on Arreton Down survives well and will contain archaeological remains and
environmental evidence relating to the barrow and the landscape in which it
was constructed.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Kell, E, 'Journal of the British Archaeological Association' in Journal of the British Archaeology Association, , Vol. 6, (1851), 453
Kell, E, 'Journal of the British Archaeological Association' in Journal of the British Archaeology Association, , Vol. 19, (1863), 130-1
Ordnance Survey, Ordnance Survey Field Inspector report, (1967)

Source: Historic England

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