Ancient Monuments

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Bowl barrow at the west end of Cothelstone Hill, 825m NNE of St Agnes' Well

A Scheduled Monument in Bishop's Lydeard, Somerset

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Latitude: 51.087 / 51°5'13"N

Longitude: -3.1612 / 3°9'40"W

OS Eastings: 318763.299525

OS Northings: 132602.535355

OS Grid: ST187326

Mapcode National: GBR LY.CYRD

Mapcode Global: FRA 4687.VMY

Entry Name: Bowl barrow at the west end of Cothelstone Hill, 825m NNE of St Agnes' Well

Scheduled Date: 23 June 1975

Last Amended: 7 February 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015085

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29358

County: Somerset

Civil Parish: Bishop's Lydeard

Traditional County: Somerset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Somerset


The monument includes a bowl barrow on the west end of the hill-top of
Cothelstone Hill, at the south west extent of the Quantocks sandstone ridge.
The barrow is 19m in diameter and 1.7m in height. The top is a flat platform
5.5m in diameter, with some of the stone core exposed by erosion. There is a
hollow 3m by 2m on the south west side of the mound.
The barrow was first documented by L V Grinsell in 1957.

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

The area of the Quantock Hills, although small in extent, is one of the few
remaining expanses of open moorland in southern Britain. Its archaeological
importance lies in the existence of a landscape displaying examples of
monuments tracing the exploitation of the hills from the Bronze Age onwards.
Well-preserved monuments from the Bronze Age and Iron Age, including round
barrows, cairns, settlements, hillforts and a trackway, as well as later
industrial remains, give insights into changes in the pattern of land use on
the hills through time. These earthworks are one of the key components of the
Quantocks' broader landscape character.
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. In excess of 30 bowl barrows can be found on
the Quantock Hills. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major
historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable variation in
form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the
diversity of beliefs and social organisations among early prehistoric
communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a
substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of

Cothelstone Hill lies at the south end of the sandstone ridge of the
Quantocks, has high visitor rates and exhibits a range of monuments in a
comparatively small area.
The barrow at the west end of Cothelstone Hill survives as a prominent
earthwork. Despite being subject to erosion and showing evidence of possible
antiquarian investigation, it will contain archaeological remains and
environmental evidence relating to the barrow's structure, function and period
of construction.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Grinsell, L V, 'Proceedings of the Smerset Archaeological and Nat.Hist Society' in Somerset Barrows Part 1, , Vol. 113, (1969), 28
Neolithic & B.A flint, 200 pieces, Flint scatter, SMR no 43034,

Source: Historic England

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