Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Round barrow 120m west of Kirkless Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Harwood Dale, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 54.3314 / 54°19'53"N

Longitude: -0.4867 / 0°29'12"W

OS Eastings: 498503.601653

OS Northings: 493924.72097

OS Grid: SE985939

Mapcode National: GBR TL1C.F2

Mapcode Global: WHGBS.HDGB

Entry Name: Round barrow 120m west of Kirkless Farm

Scheduled Date: 25 January 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019775

English Heritage Legacy ID: 34571

County: North Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Harwood Dale

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Hackness with Harwood Dale

Church of England Diocese: York


The monument includes a round barrow which occupies a prominent position in
the centre of Harwood Dale. It is situated on the boulder clay towards the
eastern edge of the North York Moors.
The barrow has an earthen mound which stands up to 1.7m high and measures 26m
in diameter. Originally the mound was surrounded by a kerb of stones to define
the barrow, but over the years these stones have become buried by soil
slipping off the mound and they are no longer visible. In the centre of the
mound and extending to the west there is a trench caused by partial excavation
in 1949. This excavation uncovered a jet pendant, as well as fragments of
pottery and traces of a cremation.
The barrow lies in an area where there are many other prehistoric monuments,
including further barrows as well as field systems and clearance cairns.
A field boundary fence runs past the southern edge of the monument in a WNW to
ESE direction. The fence posts are 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

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

Despite limited disturbance, the round barrow 120m west of Kirkless Farm has
survived well and will preserve significant information about the original
form of the barrow and the burials placed within it. Evidence for earlier land
use and the contemporary environment will also survive beneath the barrow
The barrow is particularly important since it is one of only a few barrows in
the North York Moors area to survive as an earthwork in a valley bottom
location; the majority of upstanding barrows are situated on the higher ground
of the surrounding moorlands. It lies in an area where there are many other
prehistoric burial monuments. The association with similar monuments provides
insight into the distribution of ritual and funerary activity across different
topographical zones of the landscape during the prehistoric period.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Lamplough, W H, Lidster, J R, 'Transactions of Scarborough and District Archaeol. Soc.' in The Excavation of the Kirkless Barrow, , Vol. vol 1, 3, (1960), 29-33
Title: Forestry Commission Areas North York Moors Archaeological Survey
Source Date: 1992

Source: Historic England

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