Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Bell barrow on Cockcrow Hill

A Scheduled Monument in Wisley, Surrey

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Latitude: 51.3211 / 51°19'15"N

Longitude: -0.453 / 0°27'10"W

OS Eastings: 507898.634982

OS Northings: 159135.383667

OS Grid: TQ078591

Mapcode National: GBR 2F.JHB

Mapcode Global: VHFVB.32C2

Entry Name: Bell barrow on Cockcrow Hill

Scheduled Date: 16 November 1934

Last Amended: 7 July 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012204

English Heritage Legacy ID: 20156

County: Surrey

Civil Parish: Wisley

Traditional County: Surrey

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Surrey


The monument includes a bell barrow situated on a slight rise in the Bagshot
Sands. The central mound is up to 20m in diameter and 1.5m high. Surrounding
this is a slightly sloping platform, or berm, c.5.5m wide and at a height of
1.5m above the surrounding ground surface from which material was taken
during the construction of the monument. The overall diameter of the raised
area is 44m. The barrow was partially excavated in 1911 when a cremation
burial was discovered.

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 1500-1100 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, the bell barrow on Cockcrow Hill survives well and
contains archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the
monument and the landscape in which it was constructed.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Grinsell, L V, 'Surrey Archaeological Collections' in Surrey Barrows 1934-1987: A Reappraisal, (1987)
Ordnance Survey, TQ 05 NE 7, (1966)

Source: Historic England

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