Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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One of three cairns on Three Barrows, Ugborough Moor

A Scheduled Monument in South Brent, Devon

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Latitude: 50.4477 / 50°26'51"N

Longitude: -3.8984 / 3°53'54"W

OS Eastings: 265311.17095

OS Northings: 62593.344328

OS Grid: SX653625

Mapcode National: GBR Q9.16C8

Mapcode Global: FRA 27QW.32F

Entry Name: One of three cairns on Three Barrows, Ugborough Moor

Scheduled Date: 14 October 1957

Last Amended: 29 October 1991

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013029

English Heritage Legacy ID: 10572

County: Devon

Civil Parish: South Brent

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: South Brent St Petroc

Church of England Diocese: Exeter


Many examples of prehistoric funerary monuments are preserved on Dartmoor,
mostly dating to the Bronze Age (c.2500-500). To celebrate or commemorate
the dead, mounds of earth or stone were piled in roughly hemispherical shape
over the burial, which was sometimes contained in a small rectangular
structure, or cist, made of stone slabs. Some monuments also include
kerbstones marking the outer edge of the mound and a surrounding ditch.
This is the largest of three large cairns situated prominently on the hill
known as Three Barrows. It is formed by a mound of stones on a stone and
earth base and is 40m in diameter and 2.5m in height. A reave runs through
the cairn, which is the central one of the group, but passes the other two.
The mound stones have been moved around by visitors and the cairn has a
hollow in the centre.

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

Dartmoor is the largest expanse of open moorland in Southern Britain and
because of exceptional conditions of preservation, it is also one of the
most complete examples of an upland relict landscape in the whole country.
The great wealth and diversity of archaeological remains provides direct
evidence for human exploitation of the Moor from the early prehistoric
period onwards. The well-preserved and often visible relationship between
settlement sites, major land boundaries, trackways, ceremonial and funerary
monuments as well as later industrial remains, gives significant insights
into successive changes in the pattern of land use through time.
This large cairn is one of a well-preserved group of three occupying a
prominent position on the summit of a hill named after them, their size
suggests that they were prestigious monuments. Their relationship to other
monuments of the same type along the eastern side of Erme Valley and to the
reave which passes over Three Barrows and through this cairn, indicates the
wealth of evidence relating to both occupation and the ritual side of
prehistoric life on this part of the Moor.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Spence Bate, C, 'Trans. Devonshire Assoc.' in Researches Into Some Ancient Tumuli on Dartmoor, , Vol. 5, (1872), 553
Devon County SMR SX66SE-009,

Source: Historic England

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