Ancient Monuments

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Bowl barrow in Dixon's Covert

A Scheduled Monument in Culford, Suffolk

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Latitude: 52.2942 / 52°17'39"N

Longitude: 0.6823 / 0°40'56"E

OS Eastings: 583016.034988

OS Northings: 269619.769068

OS Grid: TL830696

Mapcode National: GBR QDC.59K

Mapcode Global: VHJGG.SL2M

Entry Name: Bowl barrow in Dixon's Covert

Scheduled Date: 21 June 1976

Last Amended: 4 February 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1018675

English Heritage Legacy ID: 31115

County: Suffolk

Civil Parish: Culford

Traditional County: Suffolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Suffolk

Church of England Parish: Culford St Mary

Church of England Diocese: St.Edmundsbury and Ipswich


The monument includes a bowl barrow in Dixon's Covert, 300m north of the River
Lark on former heathland. It is visible as an earthen mound, which stands to a
height of about 2.2m and covers a roughly circular area with a maximum
diameter of about 40m. Encircling the mound is a ditch, from which the earth
was quarried during the construction of the barrow. This has become infilled
but survives as a buried feature and is marked on the east side by a slight
hollow about 5m wide in the ground surface. The barrow therefore has a maximum
overall diameter of 50m.

A 5m wide depression on the south west side of the mound is thought to be the
result of military activity between 1916 and 1917. A R Edwardson excavated a
trench, about 4m deep, into the west side of the barrow in 1958 and revealed
that the mound was constructed of decayed turf. A number of flint flakes and
pottery sherds were recovered from the fill of the ditch. He also discovered a
pit dug into the centre of the mound, the result of a previously unrecorded
excavation, from which a sherd of Bronze Age pottery was recovered.

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 in Dixon's Covert survives well. Although there is evidence
for both recorded and unrecorded excavations into the barrow, the area of
disturbance is minimal in relation to the monument as a whole which will
retain 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 also be preserved, in the upstanding earthwork, in soils
buried beneath the mound and in the fill of the partly buried ditch. The
proximity of the barrow to a number of other barrows in this part of the
Breckland, gives it additional interest. Together these barrows give some
evidence of the character, development and density of the prehistoric
population in this area.

Source: Historic England


Letter from A R Edwardson, 1958, Suffolk Archaeology Unit ref.

Source: Historic England

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