Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Bowl barrow on Asby Mask

A Scheduled Monument in Asby, Cumbria

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Latitude: 54.4998 / 54°29'59"N

Longitude: -2.4615 / 2°27'41"W

OS Eastings: 370207.288735

OS Northings: 511704.819985

OS Grid: NY702117

Mapcode National: GBR CJ7D.WQ

Mapcode Global: WH93D.5537

Entry Name: Bowl barrow on Asby Mask

Scheduled Date: 11 April 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011156

English Heritage Legacy ID: 23626

County: Cumbria

Civil Parish: Asby

Traditional County: Westmorland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cumbria

Church of England Parish: Asby St Peter

Church of England Diocese: Carlisle


The monument is a bowl barrow located on gently sloping ground approximately
80m south-east of a local high point on Asby Mask. It includes a slightly oval
earthen mound up to 0.35m high with maximum dimensions of 7.3m by 6.3m.
Surrounding the barrow are traces of a ditch up to 1m wide and 0.1m deep.
Limited antiquarian investigation of the barrow found three human skulls.

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 limited antiquarian investigation of the monument, the bowl barrow on
Asby Mask survives reasonably well. This investigation located human remains,
and further evidence of interments will exist within the mound and upon the
old land surface beneath.

Source: Historic England


Darvill, T, MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Bowl Barrows (1988), (1988)
SMR No. 1829, Cumbria SMR, Asby Mask, (1985)

Source: Historic England

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