Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Bowl barrow 490m north west of Pen Hill Farm

A Scheduled Monument in St Cuthbert Out, Somerset

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Latitude: 51.2332 / 51°13'59"N

Longitude: -2.6409 / 2°38'27"W

OS Eastings: 355348.839778

OS Northings: 148417.591

OS Grid: ST553484

Mapcode National: GBR MN.2JS2

Mapcode Global: VH89S.58QG

Entry Name: Bowl barrow 490m north west of Pen Hill Farm

Scheduled Date: 19 December 1929

Last Amended: 24 April 2002

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1020206

English Heritage Legacy ID: 34863

County: Somerset

Civil Parish: St Cuthbert Out

Traditional County: Somerset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Somerset


The monument includes a bowl barrow of prehistoric date located below the
crest of a south facing slope towards the western end of Pen Hill, which is
situated on the eastern edge of the Mendip Hills.
The barrow mound is approximately 0.65m high and 14m in diameter and, in
common with other barrows in the area, is surrounded by a ditch from which
material was quarried during its construction. Although the ditch has
become infilled by agriculture over the centuries, and is no longer
visible at ground level it survives as a buried feature approximately
1.5m wide. It has been noted from a previous survey that the mound had a
hollow at its centre and, although this is not now distinct, it is likely
to indicate partial excavation in antiquity.

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

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 some disturbance to the mound of the bowl barrow 490m north west of
Pen Hill Farm caused by its partial excavation in antiquity, it survives
comparatively well and will contain archaeological remains and environmental
evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Grinsell, L, 'Proceedings of Somerset Archaeology and Natural History Society' in Somerset Barrows, , Vol. 115, (1971), 116
Tratman, E K, 'Proc Univ Bristol Spel Soc' in Fieldwork, , Vol. 5(1), (1938), 82

Source: Historic England

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