Ancient Monuments

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Disc barrow 600m north-west of Heath Copse

A Scheduled Monument in Chute, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.305 / 51°18'18"N

Longitude: -1.6109 / 1°36'39"W

OS Eastings: 427219.92033

OS Northings: 156282.42487

OS Grid: SU272562

Mapcode National: GBR 603.1K4

Mapcode Global: VHC2B.1G7F

Entry Name: Disc barrow 600m north-west of Heath Copse

Scheduled Date: 9 October 1981

Last Amended: 11 July 1991

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012276

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12267

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Chute

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire


The monument includes a disc barrow set on a gentle west-facing slope above
the floor of a dry valley in an area of undulating chalk downland. The
central mound stands 1m high and is c.10m across. Surrounding this is a
level berm 9m wide and a ditch, from which material was quarried during the
construction of the monument. The ditch has been partly infilled over the
years but survives as a low earthwork 3m wide and 0.5m deep.
The monument is situated some 80m east of a pair of disc barrows and 70m
south-west of a bowl barrow.

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

Disc barrows, the most fragile type of round barrow, are funerary monuments of
the early Bronze Age, with most examples dating to the period 1400-1200 bc.
They occur either in isolation or in barrow cemeteries (closely-spaced groups
of round barrows). Disc barrows were constructed as a circular or oval area
of level ground defined by a bank and internal ditch and containing one or
more centrally or eccentrically located small, low mounds covering burials,
usually in pits. The burials, normally cremations, are frequently accompanied
by pottery vessels, tools and personal ornaments. It has been suggested that
disc barrows were normally used for the burial of women, although this remains
unproven. However, it is likely that the individuals buried were of high
status. Disc barrows are rare nationally, with about 250 known examples most
of which are in Wessex. Their richness in terms of grave goods provides
important evidence for chronological and cultural links amongst prehistoric
communities over a wide area of southern England as well as providing an
insight into their beliefs and social organisation. As a particularly rare
and fragile form of round barrow, all identified disc barrows would normally
be considered to be of national importance.

The Heath Copse disc barrow is an outstanding example of its class which
exhibits good survival with no evidence for excavation. As the monument
remains intact it has potential for the recovery of archaeological evidence
for the nature and duration of use of the monument and the environment
within which it was constructed. The significance of the monument is
enhanced by the fact that it is an outstanding example of its class and that
numerous other round barrows survive in the area as well as additional
evidence for contemporary settlement. Such evidence provides a clear
indication of the extent to which the area was settled during the Bronze Age

Source: Historic England

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