Ancient Monuments

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Round barrow cemetery in New Plantation 590m ESE of Amesbury Junction

A Scheduled Monument in Newton Tony, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.1491 / 51°8'56"N

Longitude: -1.6684 / 1°40'6"W

OS Eastings: 423288.022976

OS Northings: 138926.10313

OS Grid: SU232389

Mapcode National: GBR 61R.YVF

Mapcode Global: VHC32.1CBX

Entry Name: Round barrow cemetery in New Plantation 590m ESE of Amesbury Junction

Scheduled Date: 5 March 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014097

English Heritage Legacy ID: 26762

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Newton Tony

Built-Up Area: Newton Tony

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Newton Tony St Andrew

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument includes a small cemetery of six tightly clustered round barrows
which lies on the crest of a north west facing spur in New Plantation, on the
north side of Tower Hill.
The largest, best preserved, and most southerly barrow within the cemetery is
of bell-disc form. It has a circular raised area 7m in diameter and c.1m high
within which a small depression may represent the site of an unrecorded
antiquarian excavation. The raised area lies on a relatively flat central
platform, 14m in diameter which is surrounded by a ditch 2m wide and c.0.4m
deep. Beyond the ditch on the north, west and south sides is a bank, 3m wide
and 0.3m high.
To the east of the bell-disc barrow is a barrow of unusual form which survives
as a low rectangular mound, c.10m by 10m.
To the north of the bell-disc barrow lie two ditched bowl barrows. The
easterly example has a mound c.11m in diameter and 0.5m high which is
surrounded by a broad ditch 5m wide and 0.4m deep. Beyond this, on the north
east side of the barrow, is a length of external bank 2m wide and 0.3m high.
The westerly bowl barrow has an elongated mound 9m by 6m and 0.5m high to the
south east of which lies part of the ditch, 2m wide and 0.4m deep. Elsewhere
around the mound this will survive as a buried feature. Beyond this to the
north east is a low cresent shaped outer bank.
To the north of the two bowl barrows lie two small conjoined oval barrows.
Each has a mound c.4m by 9m and c.0.6m high and neither appears to have a
surrounding ditch.

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

Since 1916 the Porton Down Range has been used for military purposes. As on
the Salisbury Plain Training Area, this has meant that it has not been subject
to the intensive arable farming seen elsewhere on the Wessex chalk. Porton, as
a result, is one of very few surviving areas of uncultivated chalk downland in
England and contains a range of well-preserved archaeological sites, many of
Neolithic or Bronze Age date. These include long and round barrows, flint
mines, and evidence for settlement, land division and agriculture.
Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They comprise
closely-spaced groups of up to 30 round barrows - rubble or earthen mounds
covering single or multiple burials. Most cemeteries developed over a
considerable period of time, often many centuries, and in some cases acted as
a focus for burials as late as the early medieval period. They exhibit
considerable diversity of burial rite, plan and form, frequently including
several different types of round barrow, occasionally associated with earlier
long barrows. Where large scale investigation has been undertaken around them,
contemporary or later `flat' burials between the barrow mounds have often been
revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland Britain, with
a marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases, they are clustered around
other important contemporary monuments such as henges. Often occupying
prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern
landscape, whilst their diversity and their longevity as a monument type
provide important information on the varitey of beliefs and social
organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly
representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving or
partly-surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.
The barrow cemetery in New Plantation is a comparatively well preserved
example of its class which survey has shown to contain unusual and fragile
individual barrows. Despite some erosion caused by burrowing animals and the
disturbance of some mounds, all of the component barrows exhibit a largely
original profile. The cemetery will contain archaeological remains providing
information about Bronze Age beliefs, economy and environment.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Bowen, H C, Eagles, B N (ed), The archaeology of Bokerley Dyke, (1990), 81

Source: Historic England

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