Ancient Monuments

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Knap barrow: a long barrow 900m west of Down Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Martin, Hampshire

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Latitude: 50.9782 / 50°58'41"N

Longitude: -1.8749 / 1°52'29"W

OS Eastings: 408874.735104

OS Northings: 119868.939466

OS Grid: SU088198

Mapcode National: GBR 40Z.LS7

Mapcode Global: FRA 66YJ.KC4

Entry Name: Knap barrow: a long barrow 900m west of Down Farm

Scheduled Date: 30 November 1925

Last Amended: 24 July 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013495

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12087

County: Hampshire

Civil Parish: Martin

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Hampshire

Church of England Parish: Martin All Saints

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument includes a long barrow, conspicuously sited on Toyd Down and
well preserved under rough grassland at a junction of three trackways. The
mound, orientated south east-north west, is now tapered in plan with the
broader end facing south east. The shape of the tapered end is due, in part,
to disturbance of the south side where a terrace up to 3m wide has been cut
along the length of the mound. The mound is 95m long and varies in width
between 15m at the south east end and 11m at the west end. It survives to a
height of 1.8m at the south east end of the mound. The mound is flanked by two
ditches from which the mound material was quarried. These have been infilled
over the years but survive as buried features up to a width of 10m, one under
arable cultivation south of the mound, one overlain by the trackway to the
About 100m to the south east of Knap barrow is a second, well-preserved long
barrow known as Gran's Barrow. A third long barrow, Duck's Nest, is visible to
the north.

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

Long barrows were constructed as earthen or drystone mounds with flanking
ditches and acted as funerary monuments during the Early and Middle Neolithic
periods (3400-2400 BC). They represent the burial places of Britain's early
farming communities and, as such, are amongst the oldest field monuments
surviving visibly in the present landscape. Where investigated, long barrows
appear to have been used for communal burial, often with only parts of the
human remains having been selected for interment. Certain sites provide
evidence for several phases of funerary monument preceding the barrow and,
consequently, it is probable that long barrows acted as important ritual sites
for local communities over a considerable period of time. Some 500 examples of
long barrows and long cairns, their counterparts in the uplands, are recorded
nationally. As one of the few types of Neolithic structure to survive as
earthworks, and due to their comparative rarity, their considerable age and
their longevity as a monument type, all long barrows are considered to be
nationally important.

The 180 long barrows of Hampshire, Wiltshire and Dorset form the densest and
one of the most important concentrations of monuments of this type in the
country. Knap barrow is important as it survives particularly well and
appears as one of a group of three long barrows in the immediate area. Such
clusters give an indication of the intensity with which areas were settled
during the Neolithic Period.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Lane Poole, EH, Damerham and Martin: a study in local history, (1976), 53
Smith, I F , Long Barrows in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, (1979), 31

Source: Historic England

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