Ancient Monuments

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Two bowl barrows at Moorland Gate

A Scheduled Monument in Roborough, Devon

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Latitude: 50.9306 / 50°55'50"N

Longitude: -3.9973 / 3°59'50"W

OS Eastings: 259741.107271

OS Northings: 116475.917898

OS Grid: SS597164

Mapcode National: GBR KT.PP60

Mapcode Global: FRA 26JN.0K9

Entry Name: Two bowl barrows at Moorland Gate

Scheduled Date: 1 November 1996

Last Amended: 18 November 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015155

English Heritage Legacy ID: 28614

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Roborough

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Burrington Holy Trinity

Church of England Diocese: Exeter


This monument includes two bowl barrows aligned north west-south east situated
at Moorland Gate on an exposed hilltop on the watershed between the River
Torridge to the west and the River Taw to the east. Together, these barrows
form part of a larger group which occupies this impressive upland ridgeway
between the two major river systems. The north westernmost barrow survives as
a circular mound with a diameter of 24m standing up to 1.5m high. A slight
hollow in the centre of the mound may represent the site of an early part
excavation or robbing. The ditch from which material was quarried to construct
the mound surrounds the barrow and survives as a buried feature c.3.5m wide.
The second mound lies 14m to the south east of the first and survives as a
0.8m high, oval flat topped mound which measures 24.8m long from north to
south by 21.8m wide from east to west. The quarry ditch surrounding the mound
survives as a buried feature c.3.5m wide.

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

Despite the possibility of part excavation of the north western mound, the two
bowl barrows at Moorland Gate survive comparatively well and contain
archaeological and environmental information relating to the barrows and their
surrounding landscape. These mounds form part of a group of barrows lying on
the watershed between the Rivers Taw and Torridge.

Source: Historic England


Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS51NE5, (1983)
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS51NE6, (1983)
MPP fieldwork by H. Gerrard, (1995)

Source: Historic England

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