Ancient Monuments

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Cup, ring and groove marked rock on Kearton Rigg, 430m south of West Loups's, Cotherstone Moor

A Scheduled Monument in Bowes, County Durham

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Coordinates

Latitude: 54.5465 / 54°32'47"N

Longitude: -2.0524 / 2°3'8"W

OS Eastings: 396709.901005

OS Northings: 516802.450886

OS Grid: NY967168

Mapcode National: GBR GH3V.GZ

Mapcode Global: WHB4B.FZXH

Entry Name: Cup, ring and groove marked rock on Kearton Rigg, 430m south of West Loups's, Cotherstone Moor

Scheduled Date: 16 April 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016596

English Heritage Legacy ID: 31787

County: County Durham

Civil Parish: Bowes

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): County Durham

Details

The monument includes a prehistoric carved rock, partly covered by turf. It is
situated on the north flank of Kearton Rigg, about 3m west of the Pennine Way.
The exposed part of the rock measures 1.5m by 0.55m by 0.3m high. The carving
consists of at least three cups, several other possible cups and some grooves.

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

Prehistoric rock art is found on natural rock outcrops in many areas of upland
Britain. It is especially common in the north of England in Northumberland,
Durham and North and West Yorkshire. The most common form of decoration is the
`cup and ring' marking where expanses of small cup-like hollows are pecked
into the surface of the rock. These cups may be surrounded by one or more
`rings'. Single pecked lines extending from the cup through the `rings' may
also exist, providing the design with a `tail'. Pecked lines or grooves can
also exist in isolation from cup and ring decoration. Other shapes and
patterns also occur, but are less frequent. Carvings may occur singly, in
small groups, or may cover extensive areas of rock surface. They date to the
Late Neolithic and Bronze Age periods (2800-c.500 BC) and provide one of our
most important insights into prehistoric `art'. The exact meaning of the
designs remains unknown, but they may be interpreted as sacred or religious
symbols.
Frequently they are found close to contemporary burial monuments and the
symbols are also found on portable stones placed directly next to burials or
incorporated in burial mounds. Around 800 examples of prehistoric rock-art
have been recorded in England. This is unlikely to be a realistic reflection
of the number carved in prehistory. Many will have been overgrown or destroyed
in activities such as quarrying. All positively identified prehistoric rock
art sites exhibiting a significant group of designs will normally be
identified as nationally important.

The carving on the rock 430m south of West Loups survives well and it is one
of several carved rocks in the area of West and East Loups. It will therefore
contribute to the study of prehistoric carved rocks.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
Beckensall, S and Laurie, T , Prehistoric Rock Art of County Durham Swaledale and Wensleydale, forthcoming
Beckensall, S and Laurie, T , Prehistoric Rock Art of County Durham Swaledale and Wensleydale, forthcoming

Source: Historic England

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