Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Burnt mound, 1km north-east of Quarry House

A Scheduled Monument in Bavington, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.1194 / 55°7'9"N

Longitude: -2.0498 / 2°2'59"W

OS Eastings: 396918.546303

OS Northings: 580555.790319

OS Grid: NY969805

Mapcode National: GBR G947.0N

Mapcode Global: WHB1M.HL38

Entry Name: Burnt mound, 1km north-east of Quarry House

Scheduled Date: 15 November 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011554

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21030

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Bavington

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Kirkwhelpington with Kirkharle and Kirkheaton

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes a burnt mound of prehistoric date, situated on the edge
of the Throckrington Burn. Originally the burn flowed to the east of the mound
but its course has been diverted and it presently flows to the west. The mound
is roughly oval in shape and measures 13m by 12m. It stands to a maximum
height of 1m at the centre. It has a level top and there are traces of a kerb
of burnt stones around the summit; other burnt stones are eroding from the
mound into the stream.

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

A burnt mound is an accumulation of burnt (fire-crazed) stones, ash and
charcoal, usually sited next to a river or lake. On excavation, some form of
trough or basin capable of holding water is normally found in close
association with the mound. The size of the mound can vary considerably; small
examples may be under 0.5m high and less than 10m in diameter, larger examples
may exceed 3m in height and be 35m in diameter. The shape of the mound ranges
from circular to crescentic. The associated trough or basin may be found
within the body of the mound or, more usually, immediately adjacent to it. At
sites which are crescentic in shape the trough is normally found within the
`arms' of the crescent and the mound has the appearance of having developed
around it.
The main phase of use of burnt mounds spans the Early, Middle and Late Bronze
Age, a period of around 1000 years. The function of the mounds has been a
matter of some debate, but it appears that cooking, using heated stones to
boil water in a trough or tank, is the most likely use. Some excavated sites
have revealed several phases of construction, indicating that individual sites
were used more than once.
Burnt mounds are found widely scattered throughout the British Isles, with
around 100 examples identified in England. As a rare monument type which
provides an insight into life in the Bronze Age, all well-preserved examples
will normally be identified as nationally important.

The burnt mound north-east of Quarry House survives well. Burnt mounds are
rare monuments in northern England, with less than a dozen recorded examples
and this one is an important addition to their number.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Cowley, D, 'Archaeologia Aeliana 5 ser 19' in Some burnt mounds in Mid Northumberland, (1991), 119-121
Davies, J, Davidson, J, 'Northern Archaeology vol 9 1988-89' in A Survey of Bolam and Shaftoe area, Northumberland, (1990), 74
Hedley, R C, 'Archaeologia Aeliana 2 ser 12' in Archaeologia Aeliana 2 ser 12, (1887), 155-8
NY 98 SE 05,

Source: Historic England

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