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Neolithic long barrow 300m north west of Lake Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Thoresway, Lincolnshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.4822 / 53°28'55"N

Longitude: -0.2101 / 0°12'36"W

OS Eastings: 518874.86804

OS Northings: 399875.342325

OS Grid: TF188998

Mapcode National: GBR VXZ5.9G

Mapcode Global: WHHJ3.RQ5V

Entry Name: Neolithic long barrow 300m north west of Lake Farm

Scheduled Date: 7 July 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016736

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29743

County: Lincolnshire

Civil Parish: Thoresway

Traditional County: Lincolnshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Lincolnshire

Church of England Parish: Croxby All Saints

Church of England Diocese: Lincoln

Details

The monument includes the buried remains of a Neolithic long barrow situated
300m north west of Lake Farm, on the west-facing slopes of the Croxby Beck
valley.
Although the monument cannot be seen on the ground, its infilled and buried
ditch is clearly visible from the air as a cropmark. The cropmark (an area of
enhanced crop growth resulting from higher levels of moisture retained by the
underlying archaeological features) has been recorded on aerial photographs
since 1969.
The area of the barrow is defined by an oblong ditch with convex terminals.
The ditch measures 48m by 19m overall and is oriented north east-south west,
following the contours of the hill slope. The ditch circuit is complete and
the absence of any causeway suggests that the monument is an example of the
simple form of Lincolnshire Wolds long barrow which was unelaborated by the
construction of a large earthen mound.
Situated approximately 1.3km south of the Ash Holt long barrow, the subject of
a separate scheduling, the monument is thought to be one of a group of similar
sites focussed on the Waithe Beck and its adjacent valleys.
A series of rectilinear cropmarks and the possible remains of a small circular
enclosure are located in the area adjacent to the monument. It is not
possible to determine the nature, extent and date of these features, but they
are not thought to be associated with the long barrow and are therefore not
included in the scheduling.

MAP EXTRACT
The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 5 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Long barrows were constructed as earthen or drystone mounds, generally with
flanking ditches. They acted as funerary monuments during the Early and Middle
Neolithic periods (3400-2400 BC), representing the burial places of Britain's
early farming communities, and as such are amongst the oldest field monuments
surviving 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 activities preceding the construction of the barrow mound,
including ditched enclosures containing structures related to various rituals
of burial. It is probable, therefore, that long barrows acted as important
spiritual sites for their local communities over considerable periods of time.
The long barrows of the Lincolnshire Wolds and their adjacent regions have
been identified as a distinct regional grouping of monuments in which the
flanking ditches are continued around the ends of the barrow mound, either
continuously or broken by a single causeway towards one end. More than 60
examples of this type of monument are known; a small number of these survive
as earthworks, but the great majority of sites are known as cropmarks and
soilmarks recorded on aerial photographs where no mound is evident at the
surface.
Not all Lincolnshire long barrows include mounds. Current limited
understanding of the processes of Neolithic mortuary ritual in Lincolnshire is
that the large barrow mound represents the final phase of construction which
was not reached by all mortuary monuments. Many of the sites where only the
ditched enclosure is known have been interpreted as representing monuments
which had fully evolved mounds, but in which the mound itself has been
degraded or removed by subsequent agricultural activity. In a minority of
cases, however, the ditched enclosure will represent a monument which never
developed a burial mound.
As a distinctive regional grouping of one of the few types of Neolithic
monuments known, these sites are of great value. They were all in use over a
great period of time and are thus highly representive of changing cultures of
the peoples who built and maintained them. All forms of long barrow on the
Lincolnshire Wolds and its adjacent regions are therefore considered to be of
national importance and all examples with significant surviving remains are
considered worthy of protection.

Although the buried remains of the long barrow 300m north west of Lake Farm
are not visible on the ground, the infilled ditch survives well and will
retain, together with the old, buried ground surface, artefactual and organic
material, including human remains. These will provide rare and valuable
evidence relating to the date of construction, period of use and funerary
practices of the barrow builders. Environmental evidence preserved in the
same features may illustrate the landscape in which the monument was set.
The long barrow is one of a number of similar monuments which, focussed in the
area of the Waithe Beck, imply that the location had considerable ritual
significance in the Neolithic period. Evidence from this group of barrows may
have implications for the study of prehistoric settlement patterns and
demography.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
oblique monochrome print, St Joseph J K, AXN 75, (1969)
oblique monochrome print, St Joseph J K, AXN 76, (1969)

Source: Historic England

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