Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Bowl barrow at The Napp

A Scheduled Monument in Worthen with Shelve, Shropshire

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Latitude: 52.5879 / 52°35'16"N

Longitude: -2.9591 / 2°57'32"W

OS Eastings: 335119.711

OS Northings: 299328.613

OS Grid: SO351993

Mapcode National: GBR B8.B04N

Mapcode Global: WH8C9.J64X

Entry Name: Bowl barrow at The Napp

Scheduled Date: 9 October 1981

Last Amended: 2 July 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1017347

English Heritage Legacy ID: 32295

County: Shropshire

Civil Parish: Worthen with Shelve

Traditional County: Shropshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Shropshire

Church of England Parish: Hope

Church of England Diocese: Hereford


The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a Bronze Age bowl
barrow situated on the top, and at the southern end, of a natural north-south
ridge, near to the summit of Round Hill. From this elevated position there are
extensive views of the surrounding countryside, notably the Stiperstones to
the east and the undulating lowlands to the north. The barrow on Round Hill,
200m to the west, is also clearly visible from this location, and is the
subject of a separate scheduling.

The barrow mound is of earth and stone construction. It is about 20m in
diameter and survives to a height of 2m. The height of the monument has been
greatly enhanced by its topographic location. To the west, where no break of
slope is now detectable between the ridge and the barrow mound, the combined
height of these two features is 4m.

Although no longer visible at ground level, a ditch from which material was
quarried during the construction of the barrow, surrounds the mound. This has
become infilled over the years but survives as a buried feature approximately
3m wide.

Part of the top of the mound has been partly excavated, which has resulted in
the creation of a level platform. At the base of the resulting 0.6m deep cut
is an embedded stone slab. This slab may be the remains of a cist (a stone
slab coffin) from a later intrusive burial within the mound. No records are
known to survive of this excavation.

The modern field boundaries and fences, together with the outbuildings and
enclosure walls associated with the cottage, are excluded from the scheduling,
although the ground beneath all these features is included.

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

The bowl barrow at The Napp is a well-preserved example of this class of
monument. The barrow mound will retain evidence for its method of construction
as well as the burial or burials within it. These remains will advance our
understanding of Bronze Age society, including the ritual practices and
technical abilities of the people who constructed the barrow. The accumulated
ditch fills will preserve environmental evidence for the activities which took
place at the site during the construction of the barrow, and its subsequent
use. In addition, the buried ground surface beneath the mound will preserve
evidence for the prehistoric landscape in which the barrow was built. The
prominent position of the monument makes it a clearly visible landmark.

Source: Historic England

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