Ancient Monuments

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Three bowl barrows 640m north west of Hare Park Stud

A Scheduled Monument in Swaffham Bulbeck, Cambridgeshire

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Latitude: 52.2142 / 52°12'51"N

Longitude: 0.3081 / 0°18'29"E

OS Eastings: 557786.289

OS Northings: 259846.269

OS Grid: TL577598

Mapcode National: GBR NB6.0QS

Mapcode Global: VHHK6.9L7X

Entry Name: Three bowl barrows 640m north west of Hare Park Stud

Scheduled Date: 31 October 1972

Last Amended: 15 July 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016819

English Heritage Legacy ID: 33342

County: Cambridgeshire

Civil Parish: Swaffham Bulbeck

Traditional County: Cambridgeshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cambridgeshire

Church of England Parish: Swaffham Bulbeck St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Ely


The monument includes a group of three bowl barrows situated on a south west
facing chalk spur, approximately 300m south west of the A11/A45 junction. The
barrows have been reduced and spread by ploughing and are no longer visible
above ground, however the ditches, from which earth was dug and used in the
construction of the mounds, have become infilled over the years and survive as
buried features visible on aerial photographs.
Approximately 650m north west of Hare Park Stud are the remains of a barrow
measuring about 30m in diameter. The remains of two further barrows lie 70m
and 60m south of it; they measure approximately 25m in diameter and 20m in
diameter respectively. One of the three barrows is believed to have been
partly excavated in 1908, revealing the skeleton of a young person as well as
an urn containing the cremated remains of children. Artefacts found in the
barrow include a second urn, a flint arrow head and scrapers, as well as a
thimble and a pottery fragment, possibly of Roman date. Remains of fires,
which may have been lit as part of the funerary ceremony, were found around
the margins of the barrow.

This barrow group lies within an extensive area of burial mounds scattered
upon the chalk grounds of south east Cambridgeshire. In the close vicinity are
the bowl barrow groups 270m north of Hare Park Stud and at Allington Hill,
which are the subjects of separate schedulings.

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

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 three bowl barrows 640m north west of Hare Park Stud are some of the few
surviving examples of a formerly extensive cemetery in the chalklands of south
east Cambridgeshire, now largely destroyed. This cemetery is one of the most
substantial indicators of prehistoric activity in the region and is therefore
a focus for the study of prehistoric society. As a result of part excavation
at the beginning of the 20th century, the remains are quite well understood
while significant archaeological deposits have been left intact.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Allix, C, Hughes, T, 'PCAS' in On a Tumulus Recently Explored on Newmarket Heath, (1908)
Allix, C, Hughes, T, 'PCAS' in On a Tumulus Recently Explored on Newmarket Heath, (1908), 314-24
CUCAP RC8 - EA 72, (1982)
CUCAP: RC8 - EA 72, (1982)
RCHM, NE Cambs, (1972)
RCHM, NE Cambs, (1972)

Source: Historic England

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