Ancient Monuments

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Bell barrow 200m north of Rockley Plantation

A Scheduled Monument in Ogbourne St. Andrew, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.4573 / 51°27'26"N

Longitude: -1.7676 / 1°46'3"W

OS Eastings: 416239.9914

OS Northings: 173172.793403

OS Grid: SU162731

Mapcode National: GBR 4WM.HXH

Mapcode Global: VHB40.9MWP

Entry Name: Bell barrow 200m north of Rockley Plantation

Scheduled Date: 17 February 1927

Last Amended: 10 September 1991

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012195

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12206

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Ogbourne St. Andrew

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire


The monument includes a bell barrow set at the head of a south-facing dry
valley in an area of undulating chalk downland known as Ogbourne Maizey
Down. The barrow mound is 20m in diameter and 4m high. A central hollow,
orientated east-west and c.5m across, is evidence of partial excavation of
the barrow mound, probably in the late 19th century. Around the edge of the
barrow mound and visible as an earthwork on all but the north-east side, is
a sloping berm 6m wide. Beyond the berm is a ditch from which material was
quarried during the construction of the monument. This is no longer visible
at ground level but survives as a buried feature c.3m wide. A number of
sarsen blocks are visible on the surface of the mound, although these are
more likely to be the result of field clearance rather than forming part of
the structure of the mound.

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

Bell barrows, the most visually impressive form of round barrow, are funerary
monuments dating to the early and middle Bronze Age, with most examples
belonging to the period 1600-1300 bc. They occur either in isolation or in
round barrow cemeteries and were constructed as single or multiple mounds
covering burials, often in pits, and surrounded by an enclosure ditch. The
burials are frequently accompanied by weapons, personal ornaments, and pottery
and appear to be those of aristocratic individuals, usually men. Bell barrows
[particularly multiple barrows] are rare nationally, with less than 250 known
examples, most of which are in Wessex. Their richness in terms of grave goods
provides evidence for chronological and cultural links amongst early
prehistoric communities over most of southern and eastern England as well as
providing an insight into their beliefs and social organisation. As a
particularly rare form of round barrow, all identified bell barrows would
normally be considered to be of national importance.

Despite partial excavation of the Rockley Plantation barrow mound, much of
the monument, particularly the buried soil and ditch deposits, remains intact
and survives comparatively well. The site therefore has significant potential
for the recovery of archaeological remains. The importance of the monument is
enhanced by the fact that numerous other barrow mounds survive in the area,
providing an illustration of the intensity with which it was settled during
the Bronze Age.

Source: Historic England


28 March 1990, Schofield, A J, 28 March 1990, (1990)

Source: Historic England

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