Ancient Monuments

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Bowl barrow on Swinyard's Hill

A Scheduled Monument in Stowting, Kent

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Latitude: 51.1426 / 51°8'33"N

Longitude: 1.0407 / 1°2'26"E

OS Eastings: 612791.607867

OS Northings: 142539.859028

OS Grid: TR127425

Mapcode National: GBR TZR.CY3

Mapcode Global: VHLH6.0J1Z

Entry Name: Bowl barrow on Swinyard's Hill

Scheduled Date: 30 January 1952

Last Amended: 6 February 1991

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012259

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12823

County: Kent

Civil Parish: Stowting

Traditional County: Kent

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Kent


The monument, which is situated on a slight south-facing slope, includes
a roughly circular burial mound and a surrounding ditch which has been
completely infilled by erosion and recent agricultural activity. The
mound measures some 31m in diameter and stands over 2m higher than the
ground on the south side, although because of the sloping ground this
measurement is reduced to 0.7m on the northern side.
The surrounding ditch is visible only as a band of darker grass some 3m
wide separated from the present foot of the mound by between 3 and 5m.
The mound edge formerly abutted the surrounding ditch, but subsequent
erosion and agricultural activity has reduced the dimensions of the
mound slightly, separating it from its ditch. The ditch originally
provided the soil with which the mound was constructed. The mound and
the ditch together have a diameter of 47m.
This was once a comparatively large burial mound. It was partially
excavated in 1870 by John Brent, who found fragments of Bronze Age
pottery and the remains of a funeral pyre at a depth of less than 1m.
These are likely to have belonged to a secondary burial: Brent
considered that he had failed to locate the primary burial owing to the
alteration of the shape of the mound during soil improvement activities
in the 1840s. More recent agricultural activities exposed several stone
tools in the soil of the mound, suggesting that other secondary burials,
accompanied by grave goods, had been placed in the upper parts of the

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 limited damage to the barrow on Swinyard's Hill caused by
partial excavation and by agricultural activities, the monument retains
considerable archaeological potential. Not only is the primary burial
considered to be intact, but also surviving is the bulk of the mound
and hence any other secondary burials inserted into it as well as much
of the original ground surface beneath the mound with its evidence of
the prior land-use of the area, and the soil accumulations in the
ditches which often contain dating evidence.

Source: Historic England


Darvill, T, Monument Class Description - Bowl barrows, 1988,
TR14 SW1, TR14 SW1,

Source: Historic England

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