Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Three bowl barrows on Cannon Hill

A Scheduled Monument in Colehill,

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Latitude: 50.808 / 50°48'28"N

Longitude: -1.9359 / 1°56'9"W

OS Eastings: 404611.2034

OS Northings: 100941.3256

OS Grid: SU046009

Mapcode National: GBR 430.9CB

Mapcode Global: FRA 66TY.RMQ

Entry Name: Three bowl barrows on Cannon Hill

Scheduled Date: 17 October 1930

Last Amended: 16 May 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015999

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29557

Civil Parish: Colehill

Built-Up Area: Wimborne Minster

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Colehill St Michael and All Angels

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument, which lies within three areas, includes three bowl barrows on
Cannon Hill. The western barrow lies near the crest of the hill and has a
mound, 10m in diameter and 1m high, surrounded by a quarry ditch from which
material was excavated during its construction. This is visible in places as a
slight depression 2m wide. The central barrow, situated in a prominent
position at the end of the ridge c.300m to the east, has a flat-topped mound
16.5m in diameter and c.1m high. The quarry ditch surrounding this mound is no
longer visible but will survive as a buried feature 2m wide. The eastern mound
lies on lower ground below the end of the ridge c.250m to the ESE. It has a
mound, 28m in diameter and 2.6m high, surrounded by a quarry ditch which is
visible in places as a depression 3m wide and 0.3m deep.
All fence posts are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath
these features 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 on Cannon Hill are comparatively well preserved
examples of their class and will contain archaeological remains providing
information about Bronze Age burial practices, economy and environment.

Source: Historic England

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