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Platform barrow, the north westernmost barrow of a linear round barrow group on Bostal Hill

A Scheduled Monument in Alciston, East Sussex

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Coordinates

Latitude: 50.8244 / 50°49'27"N

Longitude: 0.122 / 0°7'19"E

OS Eastings: 549557.485014

OS Northings: 104910.225693

OS Grid: TQ495049

Mapcode National: GBR LS4.7P1

Mapcode Global: FRA C64X.HCH

Entry Name: Platform barrow, the north westernmost barrow of a linear round barrow group on Bostal Hill

Scheduled Date: 10 July 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014643

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27040

County: East Sussex

Civil Parish: Alciston

Traditional County: Sussex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): East Sussex

Church of England Parish: Selmeston St Mary with Alciston

Church of England Diocese: Chichester

Details

The monument includes a platform barrow, the north westernmost barrow of a
linear group of three round barrows situated along a ridge of the Sussex
Downs. This location enjoys panoramic views of the Channel coast to the south
and the Weald to the north. The barrow has a slightly raised, circular level
area c.16m in diameter and c.0.3m above the surrounding ground, encircled by a
ditch from which material used to construct the barrow was excavated. This has
been partly disturbed over the years by The South Downs Way long distance
footpath, which crosses its north eastern side, but survives elsewhere as a
depression c.3.5m wide and c.0.2m deep. A low bank which originally surrounded
the ditch survives as an earthwork c.1m wide on the south eastern side of the
barrow.

MAP EXTRACT
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

Platform barrows, funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age (2000-700 BC),
are the rarest of the recognised types of round barrow, with fewer than 50
examples recorded nationally. They occur widely across southern England with a
marked concentration in East and West Sussex and can occur either in barrow
cemeteries (closely-spaced groups of barrows) or singly. They were constructed
as low, flat-topped mounds of earth surrounded by a shallow ditch,
occasionally crossed by an entrance causeway. None of the known examples
stands higher than 1m above ground level, and most are considerably lower than
this. Due to their comparative visual insignificance when compared to the
larger types of round barrow, few were explored by 19th century antiquarians.
As a result, few platform barrows are disturbed by excavation and,
consequently, they remain a poorly understood class of monument. Their
importance lies in their potential for illustrating the diversity of beliefs
and burial practices in the Bronze Age and, due to their extreme rarity and
considerable fragility, all identified platform barrows would normally be
considered to be of national importance.

Although it has been partly damaged by footpath erosion, the platform
barrow on Bostal Hill survives well and will contain archaeological and
environmental remains relating to the form and function of the monument.
The barrow is part of a linear group of three broadly contemporary round
barrows, the other two of which are the subject of separate schedulings. The
round barrow group also forms part of a dispersed round barrow cemetery
constructed along the downland ridge during the Bronze Age, illustrating the
importance of the area for funerary practices during the later prehistoric
period.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
Source 2, RCHME, TQ 40 SE 19, (1930)

Source: Historic England

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