Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Howe Hill bowl barrow

A Scheduled Monument in Kennett, Cambridgeshire

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Latitude: 52.286 / 52°17'9"N

Longitude: 0.4842 / 0°29'3"E

OS Eastings: 569541.928765

OS Northings: 268221.882155

OS Grid: TL695682

Mapcode National: GBR PBS.P70

Mapcode Global: VHJGC.BSVY

Entry Name: Howe Hill bowl barrow

Scheduled Date: 19 January 1967

Last Amended: 30 August 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015011

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27169

County: Cambridgeshire

Civil Parish: Kennett

Traditional County: Cambridgeshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cambridgeshire

Church of England Parish: Kennett St Nicholas

Church of England Diocese: Ely


The monument includes a Bronze Age bowl barrow situated in a prominent
position on high ground to the west of the village of Kennet, on the south
side of Dane Hill Road approximately 50m west of its junction with Station
The barrow mound is slightly oval in plan, measuring 31m north to south by 28m
east to west. It stands about 3m above the surrounding ground surface, with
steep slopes surrounding the northern end of the mound and a less severe slope
descending to the south from a level area on the summit measuring 6m across.
There is no visible indication of a surrounding ditch.
The barrow, which is apparently unexcavated, forms part of a dispersed group
of similar monuments occupying the high ground to the north east of Newmarket;
the nearest of these, which are scheduled separately, lies approximately 1.5km
to the south west. This group in turn forms part of a wider distribution of
barrows which extends to the south west across the chalk escarpment towards
Royston, Herts.
The roadside fence line on the northern side of the monument is excluded from
the scheduling although the ground beneath is included.

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

Bowl barrows, the most numerous form of round barrow, are funerary monuments
dating from the Late Neolithic period to the Late Bronze Age, with most
examples belonging to the period 2400-1500 BC. They were constructed as
earthen or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple
burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often
acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Often superficially similar,
although differing widely in size, they exhibit regional variations in form
and a diversity of burial practices. There are over 10,000 surviving bowl
barrows recorded nationally (many more have already been destroyed), occurring
across most of lowland Britain. Often occupying prominent locations, they are
a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable
variation of form and longevity as a monument type provide important
information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisations amongst early
prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period
and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of

The Howe Hill bowl barrow is very well preserved, in marked constrast to the
majority of barrows in the region which are generally only visible on aerial
photographs. The mound stands close to its original height, and there is no
evidence that it has ever been excavated. Funerary remains surviving
undisturbed within and below the mound will provide valuable insights into
early burial practices and the beliefs of the community which built the
monument. The former ground surface, buried beneath the mound, will retain
important evidence for the appearance of the landscape at the time it was
constructed. The association between the Howe Hill barrow and the wider group
of similar monuments located to the west is particularly significant.
Comparison between these sites will provide important information concerning
the variation and development of early burial practices and the distribution
of early settlement.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Bray, S, Chippenham Park and Fen River Pipeline Archaeological Assessment, (1991)
Taylor, A, 'East Anglian Archaeology' in The Barrows of Cambridgeshire, , Vol. 12, (1981), 108-20
O.S. Revisors card, ASP, (1968)
SMR entries: barrows N of Newmarket, 4424,4425,4464 7448,,

Source: Historic England

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