Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Bowl barrow immediately east of Bishopstrow House

A Scheduled Monument in Bishopstrow, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.1978 / 51°11'51"N

Longitude: -2.1473 / 2°8'50"W

OS Eastings: 389802.758612

OS Northings: 144293.862226

OS Grid: ST898442

Mapcode National: GBR 1V7.XLF

Mapcode Global: VH97P.Q5N3

Entry Name: Bowl barrow immediately east of Bishopstrow House

Scheduled Date: 24 January 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019973

English Heritage Legacy ID: 34187

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Bishopstrow

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Bishopstrow St Aldhelm

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury


The monument includes a bowl barrow situated on a low lying spur of Lower
Chalk which forms the north side of the Wylye valley to the east of
The barrow is situated on a slight south facing slope running down to the
river. The mound is flat-topped and 2.2m high from the north but 4m high from
the south. From east to west it is 52m in diameter and from north to south
50m, the lower edge of the mound to the north having been truncated by the
building of a tennis court. The flat top is circular with a diameter of 10m.
Surrounding the mound is a ditch from which material was quarried during its
construction. This has been infilled over the years but survives as a buried
feature 3m wide except on the north west side of the mound where it has been
destroyed by a modern building.
The barrow is depicted by the 18th century antiquarian Sir Richard Colt-
Hoare on his map of sites around Warminster. There is no record that the
barrow has been excavated.
Another bowl barrow and a long barrow to the north are the subject of separate
The surface of the tennis court and fencing are excluded from the scheduling,
although the ground beneath these features is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

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 immediately east of Bishopstrow House is a particularly large
and well-preserved example of this class of monument. There is no record that
it has been excavated and it will therefore contain archaeological and
environmental evidence relating to the people who built it and the landscape
in which they lived.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Colt Hoare, R, The Ancient History of Wiltshire: Volume I, (1812), 51
Cunnington, M E, 'Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Magazine' in Some Norman Castle Sites in Wiltshire, , Vol. 45, (1930), 137

Source: Historic England

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