Ancient Monuments

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Cairn 600m south of Raven Tor

A Scheduled Monument in Rowsley, Derbyshire

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Latitude: 53.1949 / 53°11'41"N

Longitude: -1.5825 / 1°34'57"W

OS Eastings: 427987.16451

OS Northings: 366509.00796

OS Grid: SK279665

Mapcode National: GBR 583.NQM

Mapcode Global: WHCD8.NYMK

Entry Name: Cairn 600m south of Raven Tor

Scheduled Date: 9 March 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019480

English Heritage Legacy ID: 31276

County: Derbyshire

Civil Parish: Rowsley

Traditional County: Derbyshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Derbyshire

Church of England Parish: Beeley St Anne

Church of England Diocese: Derby


The monument includes a prehistoric round cairn with central cist, standing in
open moorland.

The cairn comprises a mound of stones and turf and measures approximately 8m
by 9.5m and stands about 0.5m high. It is well-preserved apart from some
disturbance to the top of the cairn where stones have been removed to expose a
central chamber. This is known as a cist and was a compartment to contain
human burial remains. The cist consists of vertical stone slabs arranged to
form a rectangular box although the western side has been removed. The
capstone is still present but displaced to the south. The chamber measures
approximately 1.15m long by an average of 0.70m wide and is now filled with
rubble. The exterior of the cairn appears largely complete except for minor
disturbances to its edges. Recent excavations of similar monuments show that
archaeological deposits will survive within and beneath the undisturbed parts
of the cairn.

The cairn is one of several funerary structures on the same moorlands.
Approximately 350m to the north stands a triple cairn complex within a field
of smaller cairns which are the subject of a separate scheduling. It is likely
that all of these monuments were contained within an important area of burial
and ceremonial activity during prehistoric times.

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

The East Moors in Derbyshire includes all the gritstone moors east of the
River Derwent. It covers an area of 105 sq km, of which around 63% is open
moorland and 37% is enclosed. As a result of recent and on-going
archaeological survey, the East Moors area is becoming one of the best
recorded upland areas in England. On the enclosed land the archaeological
remains are fragmentary, but survive sufficiently well to show that early
human activity extended beyond the confines of the open moors.
On the open moors there is significant and well-articulated evidence over
extensive areas for human exploitation of the gritstone uplands from the
Neolithic to the post-medieval periods. Bronze Age activity accounts for the
most intensive use of the moorlands. Evidence for it includes some of the
largest and best preserved field systems and cairnfields in northern England
as well as settlement sites, numerous burial monuments, stone circles and
other ceremonial remains which, together, provide a detailed insight into life
in the Bronze Age. Also of importance is the well preserved and often visible
relationship between the remains of earlier and later periods since this
provides an insight into successive changes in land use through time.
A large number of the prehistoric sites on the moors, because of their rarity
in a national context, excellent state of preservation and inter-connections,
will be identified as nationally important.

Round cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age
(c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as stone mounds covering single or
multiple burials. These burials were placed within the mound in stone-lined
compartments called cists. Often occupying prominent locations, cairns are a
major visual element in the modern landscape. Their considerable variation in
form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the
diversity of beliefs and social organisation amongst prehistoric communities.

The round cairn 600m south of Raven Tor is well-preserved and will retain
significant information on its original form and the burials placed within it.
Its proximity to similar burial monuments adds to its significance.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Barnatt, J W, The Chatsworth Estate Historic Landscape Survey (Moorlands), (1998), 169-170
Barnatt, J W, The Chatsworth Estate Historic Landscape Survey (Moorlands), (1998), 169-170

Source: Historic England

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