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Two bowl barrows forming part of a Bronze Age barrow cemetery, and part of a field system east of Eaglehead Copse

A Scheduled Monument in Havenstreet and Ashey, Isle of Wight

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Latitude: 50.6843 / 50°41'3"N

Longitude: -1.1757 / 1°10'32"W

OS Eastings: 458331.217105

OS Northings: 87503.880316

OS Grid: SZ583875

Mapcode National: GBR 9D6.3KM

Mapcode Global: FRA 87F8.FSN

Entry Name: Two bowl barrows forming part of a Bronze Age barrow cemetery, and part of a field system east of Eaglehead Copse

Scheduled Date: 23 October 1967

Last Amended: 2 November 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012761

English Heritage Legacy ID: 22047

County: Isle of Wight

Civil Parish: Havenstreet and Ashey

Traditional County: Hampshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Isle of Wight

Church of England Parish: Brading St Mary the Virgin

Church of England Diocese: Portsmouth


The monument includes two bowl barrows and part of a later field system on a
north facing slope just below the crest of the hill. The barrows form part of
a wider cemetery on Middle West Down which includes at least 17 barrows, five
of which can be identified as visible earthworks.
These two barrows are aligned north east-south west. The barrow which lies to
the north east has a mound which measures 27m in diameter and is 0.7m high.
Surrounding the mound is a ditch from which material was quarried during its
construction. This has become infilled over the years and can no longer be
seen at ground level, but survives as a buried feature c.5m wide visible on
aerial photographs. The barrow which lies to the south west no longer has a
recognisable mound, but survives as a circular ditch identified from aerial
photographs. The area of the mound has a diameter of c.12m; the surrounding
ditch is c.2m wide.
Two ploughed barrows in the field east of Eaglehead Copse were identified and
one was opened by Captain J Thorpe in 1881. It is reputed that the
north eastern barrow is the barrow which Thorpe investigated. Excavation
revealed a contracted skeleton accompanied by a food vessel. Also found in the
barrow were a large hammerstone, worked flints and pottery sherds of Neolithic
and Bronze Age date.
Later in date than the barrows is the field system. This takes the form of a
series of linear banks up to c.20m wide defining individual fields within the
system and covering a total area of c.370m east-west and c.250m north-south.
The portion of the field system which falls within the monument turns through
a right angle at the south western barrow and overlies it.

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

Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They comprise
closely-spaced groups of up to 30 round barrows - rubble or earthen mounds
covering single or multiple burials. Most cemeteries developed over a
considerable period of time, often many centuries, and in some cases acted as
a focus for burials as late as the early medieval period. They exhibit
considerable diversity of burial rite, plan and form, frequently including
several different types of round barrow, occasionally associated with earlier
long barrows. Where large scale investigation has been undertaken around them,
contemporary or later "flat" burials between the barrow mounds have often been
revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland Britain, with a
marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases, they are clustered around other
important contemporary monuments such as henges. Often occupying prominent
locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape, whilst
their diversity and their longevity as a monument type provide important
information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early
prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period
and a substantial proportion of surviving or partly-surviving examples are
considered worthy of protection.

Despite having been ploughed and one of the barrows having been partially
excavated, the bowl barrows and part of the field system east of Eaglehead
Copse are integral to the Middle West Down cemetery and the subsequent use of
the area for agricultural practices. All three features will contain
archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and
the landscape in which it was constructed.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Isle of Wight archaeological index, (1979)
Grinsell, , Sherwin, , 'Proceedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc' in Procedings of the I.O.W. Nat History and Archaeological Soc, , Vol. 3, (1940), 209
CUC 1977/SZ5887-NN-15, 16, 17/AP file,
CUCAP 22.11.77/SZ5887 CEW 038 and 042/AP file,
CUCAP 22.11.77/SZ5887 CEW 038 and 042/AP file,
NMR 1976/SZ5887-NN-14, 18/AP file,
NMR 27.7.76/SZ5887:2:313 and SZ5887:3:314/AP file,

Source: Historic England

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