Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Addington Long Barrow

A Scheduled Monument in Addington, Kent

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Latitude: 51.3069 / 51°18'25"N

Longitude: 0.3703 / 0°22'12"E

OS Eastings: 565309.902598

OS Northings: 159092.586188

OS Grid: TQ653590

Mapcode National: GBR NP3.Y6F

Mapcode Global: VHJM4.CDLY

Entry Name: Addington Long Barrow

Scheduled Date: 9 October 1981

Last Amended: 4 September 1990

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015978

English Heritage Legacy ID: 12769

County: Kent

Civil Parish: Addington

Built-Up Area: Addington

Traditional County: Kent

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Kent

Church of England Parish: Addington St Margaret

Church of England Diocese: Rochester


The Long Barrow is situated on level ground on the western edge of
Addington above a stream but, unusually, is not in a prominent
location in the landscape. It is, however, sited less than 100m from
another similar monument known as the Chestnuts Long Barrow. It is
oriented NE-SW, with the broader and higher end, also the end with the
burial chamber, to the NE. A little-used metalled road divides the
visible part of the monument into unequal parts, the road metalling
being excluded from the scheduling but not the ground beneath.
The most distinctive feature of the monument is the cluster of medium-
sized sarsen stones to the north of the road which represent the
remains of a collapsed burial chamber. The chamber originally lay at
one end of a long earthen mound which was bordered, probably
continuously, by other sarsen stones to form a kerb or peristalith.
Many of these kerbstones, both north and south of the road, are either
visible or have been detected close to the surface by probing. Quarry
ditches probably flanked the mound.
The original dimensions of the mound as suggested by the surveys of
the kerbstones are ca. 60m in length and 12-14m in width. The actual
surviving mound, spread slightly by erosion, measures 63m by 24m and
stands to aheight of less than 1m. The road has removed a strip 7-8m
wide diagonally across the mound towards the eastern end.
During excavations at the monument in 1845 only "rough pottery",
undated and untraced, was recovered. The monument has clear parallels,
however, in the other Neolithic Long Barrows of the region which form
the `Medway Megaliths'.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Long barrows were constructed as earthen or drystone mounds with flanking
ditches and acted as funerary monuments during the Early and Middle Neolithic
periods (3400-2400 BC). They represent the burial places of Britain's early
farming communities and, as such, are amongst the oldest field monuments
surviving visibly in the present landscape. Where investigated, long barrows
appear to have been used for communal burial, often with only parts of the
human remains having been selected for interment. Certain sites provide
evidence for several phases of funerary monument preceding the barrow and,
consequently, it is probable that long barrows acted as important ritual sites
for local communities over a considerable period of time. Some 500 long
barrows are recorded in England. As one of the few types of Neolithic
structure to survive as earthworks, and due to their comparative rarity, their
considerable age and their longevity as a monument type, all long barrows are
considered to be nationally important.

This example not only survives well as an earthwork of considerable
proportions but also holds high archaeological potential, never having
been seriously disturbed over much of its length. Its proximity to
another similar monument, also one of the `Medway Megaliths' group, is
of particular note.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Beale-Post, , Beale-Post Manuscript154-173
Wright, T, Wanderings of an Antiquary, (1854), 173
Darvill, T, MPP Single Monument Class Descriptions - Bowl Barrows (1988), (1988)

Source: Historic England

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