Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Pockley Gates round barrow 600m west of Beadlam Grange

A Scheduled Monument in Beadlam, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 54.2499 / 54°14'59"N

Longitude: -1.0262 / 1°1'34"W

OS Eastings: 463549.48708

OS Northings: 484235.349543

OS Grid: SE635842

Mapcode National: GBR PM89.M9

Mapcode Global: WHF9S.6FLT

Entry Name: Pockley Gates round barrow 600m west of Beadlam Grange

Scheduled Date: 19 December 1972

Last Amended: 6 October 2000

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019341

English Heritage Legacy ID: 32690

County: North Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Beadlam

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Pockley St John the Baptist

Church of England Diocese: York


The monument is the eastern and largest of a group of three prehistoric burial
mounds, known as round barrows, just south of the foot of Wykeham Dale Hill
extending eastwards from the River Riccal. The western barrow of the group,
Riccal Bridge round barrow 250m to the west overlooking the river, is the
subject of a separate scheduling. The middle barrow, which lay approximately
50m WNW of Pockley Gates barrow, is believed to have been lost to road
Pockley Gates round barrow is a mound approximately 35m in diameter. It is
sited on the edge of a slight natural rise so that it is around 0.3m high when
measured on the north side, but up to 1m on the south western side. Prior to
the creation of modern embankments and hedge lines, it would have been
intervisible with the other two barrows in the group. Although sited on low
lying ground, assuming no obscuring vegetation, it may have been originally
also intervisible with at least one of the group of three barrows just east of
Helmsley, 1.4km to the WSW and possibly with the two barrows north of Rye
House Farm, 1.8km to the south. The position of Pockley Gates round barrow, at
the foot of the hill, rather than higher up, is thought to have the additional
significance of marking an ancient route way which ran along the north side of
the Vale of Pickering. Unlike most round barrows in the area, records from the
early 1960s before the monument was first ploughed, state that the monument
had not been subjected to antiquarian excavation or other disturbance.
Although there are no obvious indications of an encircling ditch, excavation
of other examples of round barrows in the region have shown that even where no
encircling depression is discernible on the modern ground surface, ditches
immediately around the outside of the mound frequently survive as infilled
features, containing additional archaeological deposits. A margin to allow for
such an infilled ditch up to 3m wide is thus also included within the

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

Round barrows 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 mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered
single or multiple burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as
cemeteries and often acted as a focus of 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 examples recorded nationally (many more have already
been destroyed), occurring across most of Britain, including the Wessex area
where it is often possible to classify them more closely, for example as bowl
or bell barrows. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major
historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable variation in
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

Pockley Gates round barrow, 600m west of Beadlam Grange, retains a very
prominent mound which will include significant undisturbed archaeological
information below the plough soil including the primary burial and other
features. Excavations at other similar sites have demonstrated that
significant archaeological information typically survives, even where the
earthworks are continuously ploughed over many years.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
McDonnell, J, A History of Helmsley Rievaulx and District, (1963), 377

Source: Historic England

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