Ancient Monuments

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Bowl barrow in the garden of The Old Mill

A Scheduled Monument in Barnham, Suffolk

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Latitude: 52.3779 / 52°22'40"N

Longitude: 0.7426 / 0°44'33"E

OS Eastings: 586772.271188

OS Northings: 279079.273012

OS Grid: TL867790

Mapcode National: GBR RDM.VZC

Mapcode Global: VHKCK.THFG

Entry Name: Bowl barrow in the garden of The Old Mill

Scheduled Date: 12 October 1978

Last Amended: 12 March 1998

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1018041

English Heritage Legacy ID: 31098

County: Suffolk

Civil Parish: Barnham

Traditional County: Suffolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Suffolk

Church of England Parish: Barnham St Gregory

Church of England Diocese: St.Edmundsbury and Ipswich


The monument includes a bowl barrow, which is located on a triangle of land to
the west of the crossroads, at the south west end of Barnham and approximately
50m to the north east of a windmill built in 1821. The barrow is visible as an
earthen mound, which stands to a height of about 1.6m and covers a roughly
circular area with a maximum diameter of about 30m. The surrounding ground
surface slopes gently to the north. Slight hollows on the north and south
sides of the mound are thought to be the result of an investigation into the
mound, carried out by A.R.Edwardson who excavated a 11m by 3m trench across
the mound in 1957. This demonstrated that it was built up of turves with a
capping of sand. A primary burial, taking the form of a contracted inhumation
accompanied by a pygmy cup, was excavated from the centre of the mound. It is
thought that the mound is encircled by a ditch 3m wide, which has been
infilled and survives as a buried feature.
The garage, which cuts into the south east corner of the mound, the surface of
the driveway to the south and the fence to the north are all excluded from the
scheduling, although the ground beneath them 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

Although the bowl barrow in the garden of The Old Mill has undergone minimal
excavation, most of the barrow has been left undisturbed and will therefore
retain further archaeological information concerning its construction and the
manner and duration of its use. Evidence for the local environment prior to
and during that time will be also preserved, in soils buried beneath the mound
and in the fills of the buried ditch. The barrow is the only survivor of a
cluster of at least six which originally existed to the north and west. The
proximity of the barrow to this group, as well as a number of other barrows in
this part of the Breckland region give it additional interest. Together they
give some evidence of the character, development and density of the
prehistoric population in this area.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Edwardson, A R, 'Proceedings of the Suffolk Institute of Archaeology' in A Bronze Age Burial at Barnham, , Vol. 27, (1957), 186-190

Source: Historic England

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