Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Round cairn, 400m north west of Bellion Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Netherwitton, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.2097 / 55°12'34"N

Longitude: -1.8512 / 1°51'4"W

OS Eastings: 409563.713729

OS Northings: 590611.188196

OS Grid: NZ095906

Mapcode National: GBR H8J6.09

Mapcode Global: WHC2G.JBP1

Entry Name: Round cairn, 400m north west of Bellion Farm

Scheduled Date: 3 November 1964

Last Amended: 13 March 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014057

English Heritage Legacy ID: 25175

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Netherwitton

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Netherwitton

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes the remains of a round cairn of Bronze Age date situated
on a slight rise between the River Font and one of its tributaries, the
Ewesley Burn. The cairn, constructed of stone and earth, which has become
spread, measures 28m in diameter and stands to a maximum height of 1.2m. It is
thought that an encircling ditch survives beneath the spread cairn material.
The cairn was subject to an antiquarian part excavation in 1828 which
uncovered a cist or stone coffin near its centre orientated east to west. It
contained the remains of teeth and fragments of bone which represent the
remains of a burial, but the location of these is no longer known.

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 cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age
(c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as stone mounds covering single or
multiple burials. These burials may be placed within the mound in stone-lined
compartments called cists. In some cases the cairn was surrounded by a ditch.
Often occupying prominent locations, cairns are a major visual element in the
modern landscape. They are a relatively common feature of the uplands and are
the stone equivalent of the earthen round barrows of the lowlands. Their
considerable variation in form and longevity as a monument type provide
important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation
amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of
their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered
worthy of protection.

Despite disturbance by antiquarian excavation, the cairn near Bellion Farm
retains significant archaeological deposits. The importance of the monument is
enhanced by the survival of other cairns in the vicinity which taken together
will contribute to any study of Bronze Age settlement and activity in the

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Cowan, J D, 'Proc Soc Antiq Ncle 4 ser 11' in Proc Soc Antiq Ncle 4 ser 11, (1950), 171-2
NZ 09 SE 02,

Source: Historic England

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