Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Group of three bowl barrows 250m north east of Shepherds' Shore

A Scheduled Monument in Bishops Cannings, Wiltshire

We don't have any photos of this monument yet. Why don't you be the first to send us one?

Upload Photo »

Approximate Location Map
Large Map »

If Google Street View is available, the image is from the best available vantage point looking, if possible, towards the location of the monument. Where it is not available, the satellite view is shown instead.


Latitude: 51.3965 / 51°23'47"N

Longitude: -1.9331 / 1°55'59"W

OS Eastings: 404752.705606

OS Northings: 166389.936163

OS Grid: SU047663

Mapcode National: GBR 3VV.B38

Mapcode Global: VHB49.F5X8

Entry Name: Group of three bowl barrows 250m north east of Shepherds' Shore

Scheduled Date: 10 November 1964

Last Amended: 13 September 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013232

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21869

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Bishops Cannings

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Bishop's Cannings and Etchilhampton St Mary the Virgin

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument includes a group of three Bronze Age bowl barrows situated 250m
north east of Shepherds' Shore on Bishop's Cannings Down. The barrows run in a
linear group from north west to south east up a gentle slope. They are part of
a larger distribution of barrows in the area, including a number of barrow
cemeteries east of Wansdyke.
All three barrows have mounds which have been reduced by cultivation and are
only visible as slight earthworks measuring from 10m to 15m in diameter and
standing up to 0.2m high. Surrounding the mounds, but no longer visible at
ground level, are their quarry ditches from which material was obtained during
their construction. These have become infilled over the years and survive as
buried features c.2.5m wide, visible on aerial photographs.
The southern barrow was partially excavated late last century when a crouched
female skeleton was found. There is no record that the other two barrows have
ever been excavated.

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

A small number of areas in southern England appear to have acted as foci for
ceremonial and ritual activity during the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age
periods. Two of the best known and earliest recognised, with references in the
17th century, are around Avebury and Stonehenge, now jointly designated as a
World Heritage Site. In the Avebury area, the henge monument itself, the West
Kennet Avenue, the Sanctuary, West Kennet long barrow, Windmill Hill
causewayed enclosure and the enigmatic Silbury Hill are well-known. Whilst the
other Neolithic long barrows, the many Bronze Age round barrows and other
associated sites are less well-known, together they define one of the richest
and most varied areas of Neolithic and Bronze Age ceremonial monuments in the
country. 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, normally 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 and around 320 in the Avebury area. This group of
monuments will provide important information on the development of this area
during the Late Neolithic and Bronze Age periods. All surviving examples are
considered worthy of protection.

Despite having been partially reduced by cultivation, the group of three bowl
barrows 250m north east of Shepherds' Shore will contain archaeological and
environmental evidence relating to their construction and use. Partial
excavation of one of the three barrows has demonstrated the nature of
surviving remains at the site.

Source: Historic England


AM 107 OCN 493, Williams, S, Round Barrows NE of Shepherds Shore, (1986)
SU 06 NW 012, R.C.H.M. (E), National Archaeological Record, (1973)
Title: Ordnance Survey 1:10000 Series
Source Date: 1980
SU 06 NW

Source: Historic England

Other nearby scheduled monuments is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact for any queries related to any individual ancient or schedued monument, planning permission related to scheduled monuments or the scheduling process itself. is a Good Stuff website.