Ancient Monuments

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Prehistoric round cairn on Caradon Hill, 310m west of Heather House

A Scheduled Monument in Linkinhorne, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.5068 / 50°30'24"N

Longitude: -4.4374 / 4°26'14"W

OS Eastings: 227259.737275

OS Northings: 70284.124097

OS Grid: SX272702

Mapcode National: GBR NH.KD07

Mapcode Global: FRA 17LQ.H28

Entry Name: Prehistoric round cairn on Caradon Hill, 310m west of Heather House

Scheduled Date: 30 July 2003

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1020939

English Heritage Legacy ID: 15582

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: Linkinhorne

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Linkinhorne

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes a prehistoric round cairn on the upper south east
slope of Caradon Hill, a prominent hill on the south east edge of Bodmin
Moor. The cairn is an outlier of a large cairn group that extends south
west from the hill's summit and along its main spur.

The cairn survives with a low sub-circular mound measuring up to 16.5m
north west-south east by 14.1m north east-south west, the mound slightly
truncated along its north east edge by a ditch accompanying a substantial
post-medieval wall which passes 1m beyond the cairn's visible edge,
following the line of a medieval manorial and parish boundary. The cairn's
mound has a low, shallow-domed profile, up to 0.9m high, but relatively
recent small-scale quarrying for wall stone has produced an uneven surface
with several rounded hollows running in from the edges of the mound.

This cairn is part of a wider group including at least 19 prehistoric
cairns of various forms dispersed as a linear scatter extending south west
from the hill's summit, along the spine and upper flanks of its main spur.
These further cairns form the subject of separate schedulings.

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

Bodmin Moor, the largest of the Cornish granite uplands, has long been
recognised to have exceptional preservation of archaeological remains. The
Moor has been the subject of detailed archaeological survey and is one of the
best recorded upland landscapes in England. The extensive relict landscapes of
prehistoric, medieval and post-medieval date provide direct evidence for human
exploitation of the Moor from the earliest prehistoric period onwards. The
well-preserved and often visible relationship between settlement sites, field
systems, ceremonial and funerary monuments as well as later industrial remains
provides significant insights into successive changes in the pattern of land
use through time. Round cairns are funerary monuments covering single or
multiple burials and dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were
constructed as mounds of earth and stone rubble up to 40m in external diameter
but usually considerably smaller; a kerb of edge-set stones sometimes bounds
the edges of the mound. Burials were placed in small pits, or on occasion
within a box-like structure of stone slabs called a cist, let into the old
ground surface or dug into the body of the cairn. Round cairns can occur as
isolated monuments, in small groups or in larger cemeteries. Their
considerable variation in form and longevity as a monument type provides
important information on the diversity of beliefs, burial practices and social
organisation in the Bronze Age. They are particularly representative of their
period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered
worthy of preservation.

This round cairn on Caradon Hill, 310m west of Heather House, survives
reasonably well. Despite the limited attentions of post-medieval
stone-robbers and the minor truncation by the boundary wall's ditch
passing by its north east edge, the overall form of the cairn is clearly
visible and much of its mound remains unexcavated. Consequently original
features within the fabric of the mound or let into the prehistoric ground
surface beneath it are expected to survive. The old land surface,
important for the environmental data it may contain, will also survive
under much of the mound's area. The cairn forms part of a wider cairn
group on Caradon Hill, demonstrating well the major role of landscape
settings in prehistoric religious and funerary practices.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Johnson, N, Rose, P, 'The Human Landscape to c 1800' in Bodmin Moor An Archaeological Survey, (1994)
CAU, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN 1411.6, (1990)
CAU/RCHME, 1:2500 Bodmin Moor Survey AP plot & Field Traces SX 2670 & 2770, (1984)
RCHME, 1:2500 Bodmin Moor Survey AP plot SX 2770, (1984)
Title: 1:10000 Ordnance Survey Map SX 27 SE
Source Date: 2002

Source: Historic England

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