Ancient Monuments

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Neolithic long barrow 400m SSE of radio station

A Scheduled Monument in Normanby le Wold, Lincolnshire

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Latitude: 53.4465 / 53°26'47"N

Longitude: -0.3064 / 0°18'23"W

OS Eastings: 512575.918305

OS Northings: 395753.251502

OS Grid: TF125957

Mapcode National: GBR VX9L.G7

Mapcode Global: WHHJ8.8MBP

Entry Name: Neolithic long barrow 400m SSE of radio station

Scheduled Date: 7 February 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013909

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27895

County: Lincolnshire

Civil Parish: Normanby le Wold

Traditional County: Lincolnshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Lincolnshire

Church of England Parish: Normanby-le-Wold St Peter

Church of England Diocese: Lincoln


The monument includes the buried remains of a Neolithic long barrow located
160m above sea level below the summit of a plateau separating the valleys
of the Nettleton and Otby Becks. It overlooks the head of the Otby Beck
which rises in Normanby Dales some 400m to the east. Although no longer
visible on the ground, the monument is clearly visible from the air as an
elongated oblong cropmark aligned south east-north west and defined by a
perimeter ditch measuring approximately 60m long by 30m wide. The long sides
of the ditch are straight and the south eastern, wider end is slightly convex.
It is thought that this ditch - which may have supported a palisade and facade
or an arrangement of posts - delineated an area set aside for mortuary
activities including the exposure of human remains. Structures and deposits
associated with these activities will survive as buried features within the
A second such monument has been identified about 1km to the north west, east
of Acre House, and the long barrow at Top Buildings lies at a similar distance
to the north east. These monuments are the subjects of separate schedulings.
The long barrow at Normanby Dales is one of a number of prehistoric burial
mounds associated with the head and valley of the Otby Beck and with High
Street which originated as a prehistoric trackway and which is situated
c.1.4km to the east.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 5 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, generally with
flanking ditches. They acted as funerary monuments during the Early and Middle
Neolithic periods (3400-2400 BC), representing the burial places of Britain's
early farming communities, and as such are amongst the oldest field monuments
surviving 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 activities preceding the construction of the barrow mound,
including ditched enclosures containing structures related to various rituals
of burial. It is probable, therefore, that long barrows acted as important
spiritual sites for their local communities over considerable periods of time.
The long barrows of the Lincolnshire Wolds and their adjacent regions have
been identified as a distinct regional grouping of monuments in which the
flanking ditches are continued around the ends of the barrow mound, either
continuously or broken by a single causeway towards one end. More than 60
examples of this type of monument are known; a small number of these survive
as earthworks, but the great majority of sites are known as cropmarks and
soilmarks recorded on aerial photographs where no mound is evident at the
Not all Lincolnshire long barrows include mounds. Current limited
understanding of the processes of Neolithic mortuary ritual in Lincolnshire is
that the large barrow mound represents the final phase of construction which
was not reached by all mortuary monuments. Many of the sites where only the
ditched enclosure is known have been interpreted as representing monuments
which had fully evolved mounds, but in which the mound itself has been
degraded or removed by subsequent agricultural activity. In a minority of
cases, however, the ditched enclosure will represent a monument which never
developed a burial mound.
As a distinctive regional grouping of one of the few types of Neolithic
monuments known, these sites are of great value. They were all in use over a
great period of time and are thus highly representive of changing cultures of
the peoples who built and maintained them. All forms of long barrow on the
Lincolnshire Wolds and its adjacent regions are therefore considered to be of
national importance and all examples with significant surviving remains are
considered worthy of protection.

Although the long barrow 400m SSE of the radio station has been reduced by
ploughing, it will retain rare and valuable archaeological deposits providing
valuable information relating to its dating and construction and the sequence
of mortuary ritual at the site. Environmental evidence will also be preserved
which will illustrate the nature of the landscape in which the monument was
The monument lies in close proximity to a number of other Neolithic and Bronze
Age barrows whose association with the valley of the Otby Beck and with the
prehistoric trackway, now formalised as High Street, indicates the ritual
significance of this location in the prehistoric period. The number of these
monuments in this area also poses wider questions regarding prehistoric
demography and settlement patterns.

Source: Historic England


discussion, Jones, D, (1995)
oblique monochrome photograph, Everson, P, 2977/30, 36-38, (1979)

Source: Historic England

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