Ancient Monuments

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Three bowl barrows 380m west of West End Barn

A Scheduled Monument in Dewlish, Dorset

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Latitude: 50.7661 / 50°45'57"N

Longitude: -2.3068 / 2°18'24"W

OS Eastings: 378459.35347

OS Northings: 96324.507076

OS Grid: SY784963

Mapcode National: GBR 0YX.ZJ3

Mapcode Global: FRA 6712.53M

Entry Name: Three bowl barrows 380m west of West End Barn

Scheduled Date: 17 July 1961

Last Amended: 14 February 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015031

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27399

County: Dorset

Civil Parish: Dewlish

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Milborne St Andrew

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument includes three bowl barrows 380m west of West End Barn, part of
an extensive group of at least 15 barrows and ring ditches on Lord's Down.
The most easterly barrow is located on the parish boundary and has a mound
which is c.30m in diameter and a maximum of 1.8m high within the confines of
the track running along the parish boundary. On the west and east sides of the
parish boundary the mound has been depleted by ploughing, although it still
survives to a height of 0.7m in the eastern field, giving it an elongated
appearance. Surrounding the mound is a quarry ditch from which material was
excavated during its construction. This has become infilled over the years but
is visible as a slight depression on all but the western side and survives as
a buried feature c.3m wide. This barrow may have been excavated by Warne in
1882 when a bone pin and a chalk object were found in a chalk cist.
The southerly barrow has a mound which is c.19m in diameter and 0.3m high and
is surrounded by a quarry ditch which survives as a buried feature c.2m wide.
This barrow was probably excavated by Warne in 1882 when it was found to
contain a primary cremation in a central cist, 4ft (1.2m) by 2ft (0.6m) and
2ft (0.6m) deep, at the base of the mound associated with a bone crutch-headed
pin, tweezers, a perforated whetstone and a bronze ogival dagger.
The western barrow has a mound which is 25m in diameter and 0.5m high. There
is no surface indication of the quarry ditch surrounding the mound but this
will survive as a buried feature c.3m wide. Aerial photographs indicate that
this is the outermost of three concentric quarry ditches. This barrow may have
been excavated by Warne in 1882 when it was found to contain a primary grave,
6ft (1.8m) in diameter and cut 2ft (0.6m) into the natural chalk. This
contained a long-necked beaker but apparently no inhumation. The mound was
12ft (3.6m) high when excavated and was thought to have been enlarged both
vertically and horizontally throughout the Bronze Age. This observation
appears to be confirmed by the evidence of multiple quarry ditches. Secondary
burials include the inhumation of a child associated with sherds of Beaker
pottery, the cremation of a child contained within an upright urn laid in a
cist, a cremation and ashes beneath an inverted urn, two cremations beneath
inverted urns in a cist, and an intrusive Romano-British or post Roman
inhumation 18 inches (0.45m) below the surface.
Warne mentions three other possible barrows or burials adjoining the western
barrow which are no longer visible and cannot be positively identified, and
are therefore not included in this scheduling. All the barrows are probably
situated within a Celtic field system which has been reduced in height by
ploughing in this vicinity and is not included within the scheduling.
All fence posts are excluded from the scheduling although the ground beneath
them 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 three bowl barrows 380m west of West End Barn, although reduced in height
by ploughing, and despite the possibility of them having been partly excavated
in the past, will include archaeological remains containing information about
Bronze Age burial practices, economy and environment.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Warne, C, Celtic Tumuli of Dorset, (1886)
Mansel Pleydell, J C, 'Proceedings of the Dorset Natural History and Arch. Society' in The Barrows Of Dorset, , Vol. 5, (1883), 31-32

Source: Historic England

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