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Barrow cemetery on Hardown Hill 600m west of Butt Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Whitchurch Canonicorum, Dorset

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Coordinates

Latitude: 50.7469 / 50°44'48"N

Longitude: -2.8441 / 2°50'38"W

OS Eastings: 340545.048221

OS Northings: 94483.667941

OS Grid: SY405944

Mapcode National: GBR PL.NCT6

Mapcode Global: FRA 47X3.KT4

Entry Name: Barrow cemetery on Hardown Hill 600m west of Butt Farm

Scheduled Date: 3 July 1959

Last Amended: 22 December 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016375

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29580

County: Dorset

Civil Parish: Whitchurch Canonicorum

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Whitchurch Canonicorum with Stanton St Gabriel and Fishpond St Candida and Holy Cross

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury

Details

The monument includes a bowl barrow cemetery of five bowl barrows on Hardown
Hill 600m west of Butt Farm. Four barrows lie on the edge of the hill in a
curved line aligned north-south. These barrows vary in diameter between 9m and
13m and between 0.6m and 1m in height. Surrounding each mound is a quarry
ditch from which material was excavated during their construction. These have
become infilled over the years but survive as buried features approximately 2m
wide. The fifth barrow has a mound, 8m in diameter and 0.4m high, with a large
flat-bottomed hollow in the middle, surrounded by two concentric banks. The
inner bank, at a distance of 3.5m from the edge of the mound, is a vague
feature 1m wide and 0.1m high with an outer ditch 1m wide and 0.1m deep. A gap
of about 2m separates the banks. The outer bank, 2m wide and about 0.3m high,
links four horseshoe-shaped earthworks symetrically placed around the circle
with the open sides facing towards the central mound. These earthworks, an
average of 10m wide and 0.5m high, all have depressions up to 0.5m deep in
their bases. The ditch external to the outer bank is vague and intermittent
and curves around the outer edges of these features. It is thought that the
central mound is most likely a Bronze Age burial mound which has been later
incorporated into a more elaborate earthwork feature.
In 1916 one of these barrows was excavated by Dr Wynyatt Wingrave, who found
it to contain pagan Saxon burials with grave goods including spearheads, a
knife, a shield boss, and a bronze brooch dating to the mid-fifth to the mid-
sixth century. The exact provenance of the finds is uncertain but the mound
within the concentric banks seems the most likely location because of the size
of the depression cut into it. The objects found suggest a minimum of five
graves which are thought to be secondary burials inserted into the Bronze Age
barrow.

MAP EXTRACT
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

Round barrow cemeteries date to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They comprise
closely-spaced groups of up to 30 round barrows - rubble or earthen mounds
covering single or multiple burials. Most cemeteries developed over a
considerable period of time, often many centuries, and in some cases acted as
a focus for burials as late as the early medieval period. They exhibit
considerable diversity of burial rite, plan and form, frequently including
several different types of round barrow, occasionally associated with earlier
long barrows. Where large scale investigation has been undertaken around them,
contemporary or later "flat" burials between the barrow mounds have often been
revealed. Round barrow cemeteries occur across most of lowland Britain, with a
marked concentration in Wessex. In some cases, they are clustered around other
important contemporary monuments such as henges. Often occupying prominent
locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape, whilst
their diversity and their longevity as a monument type provide important
information on the variety of beliefs and social organisation amongst early
prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period
and a substantial proportion of surviving or partly-surviving examples are
considered worthy of protection.

The round barrow cemetery on Hardown Hill 600m west of Butt Farm is a well
preserved example of its class and will contain archaeological remains
providing information relating to Bronze Age and later burial practices,
economy and environment. Part excavation of one of the barrows in 1916
identified secondary burials of early Saxon date indicating continuity of use.
Finds of this date are rare within Dorset.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Books and journals
'Procs of the Dorset Nat Hist and Archaeology Society' in The Anglo Saxon Finds from Hardown Hill, , Vol. 90, (1968), 232-240
'Procs of the Dorset Nat Hist and Archaeology Society' in The Anglo Saxon Finds from Hardown Hill, , Vol. 90, (1968), 232-240
'Procs of the Dorset Nat Hist and Archaeology Society' in The Anglo Saxon Finds from Hardown Hill, , Vol. 90, (1968), 232-240
'Procs Dorset Nat Hist and Archaeology Soc' in An Anglo-Saxon burial on Hardown Hill, , Vol. 53, (1931), 247-149
'Procs Dorset Nat Hist and Archaeology Soc' in An Anglo-Saxon burial on Hardown Hill, , Vol. 53, (1931), 247-249
'Procs Dorset Nat Hist and Archaeology Soc' in An Anglo-Saxon burial on Hardown Hill, , Vol. 53, (1931), 247-249

Source: Historic England

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