Ancient Monuments

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Bowl barrow south of Rivar Copse: part of a barrow cemetery on Inkpen Hill

A Scheduled Monument in Ham, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.356 / 51°21'21"N

Longitude: -1.4955 / 1°29'43"W

OS Eastings: 435223.251052

OS Northings: 162006.465524

OS Grid: SU352620

Mapcode National: GBR 70T.SVM

Mapcode Global: VHC26.157S

Entry Name: Bowl barrow south of Rivar Copse: part of a barrow cemetery on Inkpen Hill

Scheduled Date: 26 August 1924

Last Amended: 19 June 1991

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012423

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12230

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Ham

Traditional County: Berkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Inkpen

Church of England Diocese: Oxford


The monument includes a bowl barrow set below the crest of a steep north-
facing escarpment known as Inkpen Hill. The barrow mound is 25m in diameter
and survives to a height of 1.4m. Surrounding the mound is a ditch from which
material was quarried during the construction of the monument. This has
been partly infilled over the years but survives as an earthwork 5m wide
and 0.9m deep. The site was partially excavated in 1908. Finds included a
cremation burial set inside a stone cist or box and accompanied by three bone
implements, a bone needle and a bronze razor, all of which are believed to be
contemporary with the barrow mound.
The monument is part of a dispersed barrow cemetery comprising six barrows,
all within 200m of each other, set on and below the crest of Inkpen Hill.

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. Their ubiquity and their tendency to occupy
prominent locations makes them 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 protection.

The Inkpen Hill barrow is important as it survives well and, despite
partial excavation of the site, has potential for the recovery of
additional archaeological and environmental evidence. The significance of
the site is enhanced by its inclusion within a dispersed barrow cemetery
including five further barrow mounds. Barrow cemeteries give an indication of
the intensity with which areas were settled during prehistory and
provide evidence for the range of beliefs and the nature of social
organisation during the Bronze Age.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Crawford, O G S, 'Transactions of the Newbury District Field Club' in Trans Newbury District Field Club (Volume 10), , Vol. 10, (1954), 21-2
Piggott, C M, 'Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society' in PPS Volume 12, , Vol. 12, (1946), 137

Source: Historic England

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