Ancient Monuments

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Four bowl barrows on Langaford Moor

A Scheduled Monument in Ashwater, Devon

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Latitude: 50.778 / 50°46'40"N

Longitude: -4.2561 / 4°15'22"W

OS Eastings: 241032.26947

OS Northings: 100029.046472

OS Grid: SS410000

Mapcode National: GBR NQ.0BL6

Mapcode Global: FRA 17Z1.1PK

Entry Name: Four bowl barrows on Langaford Moor

Scheduled Date: 10 August 1923

Last Amended: 24 October 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016223

English Heritage Legacy ID: 28647

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Ashwater

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Halwill St Peter and St James

Church of England Diocese: Exeter


The monument, which falls into three areas of protection, includes four Bronze
Age bowl barrows situated on Langaford Moor. The barrows occupy a high upland
ridge which enjoys commanding views across to Dartmoor in the south, and over
valleys of tributaries of the River Carey. They form part of a concentration
of similar monuments in the area. The four bowl barrows are aligned east-west
along the line of the natural ridge. An outlier situated to the north, which
occupies a different hilltop beyond a small river valley, is the subject of a
separate scheduling.
The westernmost barrow of the group survives as a 35m diameter circular, flat-
topped mound standing up to 1.2m high.
The central barrow survives as a 29m diameter circular flat-topped mound
standing up to 0.5m high. To the east a land drain or trackway runs from north
to south and has cut the quarry ditch on the eastern side of the mound.
The easternmost barrows which lie within a single area of protection, survive
as two conjoined mounds. The larger of the two is oval in shape and measures
22m long from east to west and 19m wide from north to south and is 0.8m high.
To the SSE is the second, smaller circular mound which has a diameter of 9m
and stands up to 0.3m high.
All four barrows are surrounded by 2m wide buried ditches from which material
was quarried during their construction.

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 limited damage as a result of modern activities, these four barrows on
Langaford Moor survive comparatively well and contain archaeological and
environmental information relating to the monument and its surrounding
landscape. These barrows form part of a wider distribution which includes
several barrows situated within this part of Devon.

Source: Historic England


Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS40SW6, (1983)
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS40SW7, (1984)
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SS40SW8, (1984)
MPP Fieldwork by H. Gerrard, Gerrard, H., (1996)

Source: Historic England

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