Ancient Monuments

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Neolithic long barrow 380m south west of Thorganby House

A Scheduled Monument in Thorganby, Lincolnshire

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Latitude: 53.4589 / 53°27'32"N

Longitude: -0.186 / 0°11'9"W

OS Eastings: 520535.127716

OS Northings: 397329.112744

OS Grid: TF205973

Mapcode National: GBR WX4F.JS

Mapcode Global: WHHJB.3BP5

Entry Name: Neolithic long barrow 380m south west of Thorganby House

Scheduled Date: 15 June 1999

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1020359

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29756

County: Lincolnshire

Civil Parish: Thorganby

Traditional County: Lincolnshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Lincolnshire

Church of England Parish: Thorganby All Saints

Church of England Diocese: Lincoln


The monument includes the buried remains of a Neolithic long barrow situated
380m south west of Thorganby House on the east-facing slopes of the Waithe
Beck valley.
Although the long barrow cannot be seen on the ground, it is clearly visible
from the air as a cropmark (an area of enhanced crop growth resulting from
higher levels of moisture retained by the underlying archaeological features),
which has been recorded on aerial photographs.
The barrow, which is oriented east to west, is defined by a roughly oval
shaped ditch measuring 44m east to west and 19m north to south overall. Its
western terminal is somewhat pointed whilst the eastern end is slightly
convex. Since the ditch is not broken by a causeway, it is thought that this
is an example of the simpler form of Lincolnshire Wolds long barrow which was
not elaborated by the construction of a substantial earthwork mound over the
area set aside for funerary activities. The area defined by the ditch will
contain buried archaeological remains relating to these activities, including
burial deposits, artefacts and ritual pits together with evidence for the
processes of construction.
The monument lies approximately 900m due south of the long barrow at Thorganby
Hall, and 1.25km NNW of Ash Hill long barrow, both the subject of separate
schedulings, all of which are part of a larger group which is associated with
the Waithe Beck and its tributaries.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 10 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Long barrows were constructed as earthen or drystone mounds, generally with
flanking ditches. They acted as funerary monuments during the Early and Middle
Neolithic periods (3400-2400 BC), representing the burial places of Britain's
early farming communities, and as such are amongst the oldest field monuments
surviving in the present landscape. Where investigated, long barrows appear to
have been used for communal burial, often with only parts of the human remains
having been selected for interment. Certain sites provide evidence for several
phases of funerary activities preceding the construction of the barrow mound,
including ditched enclosures containing structures related to various rituals
of burial. It is probable, therefore, that long barrows acted as important
spiritual sites for their local communities over considerable periods of time.
The long barrows of the Lincolnshire Wolds and their adjacent regions have
been identified as a distinct regional grouping of monuments in which the
flanking ditches are continued around the ends of the barrow mound, either
continuously or broken by a single causeway towards one end. More than 60
examples of this type of monument are known; a small number of these survive
as earthworks, but the great majority of sites are known as cropmarks and
soilmarks recorded on aerial photographs where no mound is evident at the
Not all Lincolnshire long barrows include mounds. Current limited
understanding of the processes of Neolithic mortuary ritual in Lincolnshire is
that the large barrow mound represents the final phase of construction which
was not reached by all mortuary monuments. Many of the sites where only the
ditched enclosure is known have been interpreted as representing monuments
which had fully evolved mounds, but in which the mound itself has been
degraded or removed by subsequent agricultural activity. In a minority of
cases, however, the ditched enclosure will represent a monument which never
developed a burial mound.
As a distinctive regional grouping of one of the few types of Neolithic
monuments known, these sites are of great value. They were all in use over a
great period of time and are thus highly representive of changing cultures of
the peoples who built and maintained them. All forms of long barrow on the
Lincolnshire Wolds and its adjacent regions are therefore considered to be of
national importance and all examples with significant surviving remains are
considered worthy of protection.

Although the buried remains of the long barrow 380m south west of Thorganby
House are not visible on the ground, the infilled ditch survives well and will
retain, together with the old, buried ground surface, artefactual and organic
material, including human remains. These will provide rare and valuable
evidence relating to the date of construction, period of use and funerary
practices of the barrow builders. Environmental evidence preserved in the
same features may illustrate the landscape in which the monument was set.
The long barrow is one of a number of similar monuments which, focussed in the
area of the Waithe Beck, suggests that the location had considerable ritual
significance in the Neolithic period. Evidence from this group of barrows may
have implications for the study of prehistoric settlement patterns and

Source: Historic England


oblique monochrome prints, TF2097/5-8 Frames 57-60, (1995)

Source: Historic England

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