Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Bowl barrow known as St Paul's Epistle Mound

A Scheduled Monument in Withington, Gloucestershire

More Photos »
Approximate Location Map
Large Map »

If Google Street View is available, the image is from the best available vantage point looking, if possible, towards the location of the monument. Where it is not available, the satellite view is shown instead.


Latitude: 51.8623 / 51°51'44"N

Longitude: -1.9981 / 1°59'53"W

OS Eastings: 400227.903

OS Northings: 218187.624

OS Grid: SP002181

Mapcode National: GBR 2MT.CMS

Mapcode Global: VHB1Y.BG17

Entry Name: Bowl barrow known as St Paul's Epistle Mound

Scheduled Date: 17 August 1948

Last Amended: 7 July 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016842

English Heritage Legacy ID: 32349

County: Gloucestershire

Civil Parish: Withington

Traditional County: Gloucestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Gloucestershire

Church of England Parish: Dowdeswell and Andoversford

Church of England Diocese: Gloucester


The monument includes a bowl barrow known as St Paul's Epistle Mound on the
crest of a hill in the Cotswolds. The barrow mound is square in shape and
measures 11m by 11m and about 1.2m high. Surrounding the mound is a ditch from
which material was excavated for the construction of the barrow. This is no
longer visible at ground level, but survives as a buried feature about 2m
wide. The square shape of the barrow is thought to be due to ploughing around
the edges of the mound at some time in the past. It has been suggested that
the barrow gained its name by being the place where an epistle of St Paul was
read during the beating of the parish bounds. There is a second local
tradition that Bishop Hooper preached from the mound before being burnt as a
heretic in Gloucester.

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

St Paul's Epistle Mound survives well in a stable situation in an area of
prehistoric activity, with a second round barrow less than 1km to the south
east. The barrow mound will contain evidence for primary and secondary
burials, along with grave goods, which will provide information about
prehistoric funerary practices and about the local community at that time. The
mound will also preserve environmental information in the buried ground
surface predating the construction of the barrow, and provide evidence for the
landscape at the time of the barrows construction. In addition, the mound and
its surrounding ditch will contain environmental evidence in the form of
organic remains, which will relate both to the barrow and the wider landscape.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
O`Neil, H E, Grinsell, L V, 'Proc of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Arch Soc' in Gloucestershire Barrows, , Vol. LXXIX, (1960), 112

Source: Historic England

Other nearby scheduled monuments is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact for any queries related to any individual ancient or schedued monument, planning permission related to scheduled monuments or the scheduling process itself. is a Good Stuff website.