Ancient Monuments

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Bowl barrow in the garden of Beechbarrow

A Scheduled Monument in St Cuthbert Out, Somerset

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Latitude: 51.2379 / 51°14'16"N

Longitude: -2.6163 / 2°36'58"W

OS Eastings: 357070.841378

OS Northings: 148923.88433

OS Grid: ST570489

Mapcode National: GBR MP.2BZ2

Mapcode Global: VH89S.L4QW

Entry Name: Bowl barrow in the garden of Beechbarrow

Scheduled Date: 19 December 1929

Last Amended: 7 November 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1020019

English Heritage Legacy ID: 34864

County: Somerset

Civil Parish: St Cuthbert Out

Traditional County: Somerset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Somerset


The monument includes a Bronze Age bowl barrow situated in the south east
corner of the garden at Beechbarrow, located on high ground at the eastern
edge of the Mendip Hills. The mound of the barrow is slightly irregular in
plan with an approximate diameter of 20m and a maximum height of 2m. The
barrow was identified by an early 20th century field worker as a possible bell
barrow with an off-centre mound surrounded by a level berm.
It is now considered more likely that the barrow was a bowl type and its
original profile had been disturbed by the planting of beech trees on and
around the mound which created the spurious impression of a bell barrow. In
common with other barrows in the area, the mound is surrounded by a ditch from
which material was quarried during its construction. This has become infilled
over the years but is likely to survive as a buried feature up to 2.5m wide.

All fencing and 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.

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

Despite disturbance to the mound by a cluster of mature beech trees, the bowl
barrow in the garden of Beechbarrow survives well and will contain
archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and
the landscape in which it was constructed.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Grinsell, L, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaeology and Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, , Vol. 115, (1971), 117
Tratman, E K, 'Proc Univ Bristol Spel Soc' in Fieldwork, , Vol. 5(1), (1938), 82

Source: Historic England

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