Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Round barrow 440m north of Blansby Park Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Pickering, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 54.273 / 54°16'22"N

Longitude: -0.7364 / 0°44'11"W

OS Eastings: 482379.906502

OS Northings: 487109.604152

OS Grid: SE823871

Mapcode National: GBR RM91.C0

Mapcode Global: WHF9Q.NVJM

Entry Name: Round barrow 440m north of Blansby Park Farm

Scheduled Date: 19 January 1968

Last Amended: 3 September 2002

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1020817

English Heritage Legacy ID: 35464

County: North Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Pickering

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Pickering St Peter and St Paul

Church of England Diocese: York


The monument includes buried remains of a prehistoric round barrow. It is
located in the central part of the area of land known as Blansby Park,
which lies on the southern limestone fringe of the predominantly sandstone
North York Moors. It occupies a broad promontory of undulating land
defined by the deep valleys of Gundale Beck to the west and Newton Dale to
the east and south. Archaeological evidence shows that the land was used
intensively in the prehistoric, Roman and medieval periods for
agricultural, industrial and ritual purposes and although the land has
been enclosed and mostly ploughed since World War II, remains of these
activities still survive today.
Originally the barrow had an earth and stone mound shown on a map in 1928
to measure approximately 15m in diameter. The mound has subsequently been
reduced by agricultural activity but remains of it can still be identified
as a low mound 0.2m in height. Although the mound has been reduced in
height, evidence of its construction and remains of burials will survive
below ground. Similar monuments in the area have been found to have
contained human skeletons and cremation burials contained in pits up to 1m
below ground level.

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

Although the round barrow 440m north of Blansby Park Farm has been reduced
by agricultural activity, significant archaeological deposits will be
preserved. It is one of many similar monuments in the immediate area and
will preserve important evidence of the ritual use of the landscape.
Excavation of other round barrows in the region have shown that they
demonstrate a very wide range of burial rites from simple scatters of
cremated material to coffin inhumations and cremations contained in urns,
typically dating to the Bronze Age. A common factor is that barrows were
normally used for more than one burial and that the primary burial was
frequently on or below the original ground surface, often with secondary
burials located within the body of the mound. Most barrows include a small
number of grave goods. These are often small pottery food vessels, but
stone, bone, jet and bronze items have also occasionally been found.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Smith, M J B, Excavated Bronze Age Burial Mounds of Durham and N' land., (1994), 1-22

Source: Historic England

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