Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Newton henge, cropmark

A Scheduled Monument in Rhossili (Rhosili), Swansea (Abertawe)

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Latitude: 51.5711 / 51°34'15"N

Longitude: -4.2437 / 4°14'37"W

OS Eastings: 244601

OS Northings: 188185

OS Grid: SS446881

Mapcode National: GBR GR.3YGR

Mapcode Global: VH3MW.DRCZ

Entry Name: Newton henge, cropmark

Scheduled Date: 17 December 2003

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 4057

Cadw Legacy ID: GM580

Schedule Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Category: Henge

Period: Prehistoric

County: Swansea (Abertawe)

Community: Rhossili (Rhosili)

Traditional County: Glamorgan


The monument comprises the remains of a henge monument, indicated by a soilmarks and cropmarks on aerial photographs and is situated in enclosed improved pasture on the Gower peninsula. The cropmarks indicate a large circular ditch, measuring 53m in overall diameter and about 5m in width. Henges are ceremonial monuments dating from the Late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age (c. 3000 BC - 1500 BC). They comprise circular areas defined by a bank and internal ditch. While the ceremonies and rituals that took place at henge sites will likely never be fully understood, they seem to be ceremonial centres carefully designed and situated to control community participation and link into the surrounding landscape. It is thought that they marked a change in social attitudes towards the disposal of the dead, with burial rites previously focused solely on the chambered tomb. It is also possible that the later tradition of stone circles developed from the henge monument - while stone circles occur in only a very few henge monuments, most excavated examples of henges have been shown to contain circular settings of timber posts.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of prehistoric ritual practices. The monument retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of ritual deposits and environmental and structural evidence. The monument forms an important element in the wider prehistoric funerary and ritual landscape.

The area scheduled comprises the remains described and an area around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.

Source: Cadw

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