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Historic England Research Records

How Tallon Round Barrow And Rock Art

Hob Uid: 19751
Location :
North Yorkshire
Richmondshire
County Durham
Newsham, Barningham
Grid Ref : NZ0574007410
Summary : A round cairn excavated in 1897. Five burials, all inhumations, and an empty cist were found. An Ordnance Survey concrete triangulation pillar is located on the north summit of the cairn. The modern field wall that runs over the cairn contains rock art motif of cup-marked stones which were disturbed during the excavations and built into the wall over the cairn afterwards. The panels were recorded as part of The Northumberland and Durham Rock Art Project (NADRAP) 2005-2008. Scheduled.
More information : NZ 0574 0741. How Tallon (NAT) (Tumulus) (NR). (1)

Several barbed and tanged arrowheads and some leaf-shaped varieties usually associated with Neolithic times were found in a tumulus on How Tallon, a Bronze Age cisted barrow (3a). They are in Bowes Museum. (2-3-3a)

How Tallon is a turf-covered round cairn, 14 m in diameter and 1 m maximum height. The centre of the cairn has been mutilated and spoil dumped to one side, but there is no trace of a cist. An OS triangulation pillar has been erected approximately 2 m to the north west of the centre and a modern wall overlaps the cairn to the south east. Surveyed at 1:10 000. (4)

NZ 0575 0742. How Tallon stone cairn was excavated in 1897, and 1936 by Gatty and Milbank who found sherds of food vessel and Beaker, flints and human skeletal remains. Now in the Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle. (5)

Fragments of Beaker (Corpus No 1237) from How Tallon listed as `Indeterminate' group by Clarke. (6)

No change. Additional survey at 1:500 made. (7)

The site was visited by RCHME during a survey of scheduled monuments in County Durham.

How Tallon survives as a flat-topped stone cairn, now predominantly turf-covered, which has a maximum diameter of 14.5 m, and a height of 1.5 m. A slight depression up to 2.5 m in diameter and 0.2 m deep is located in the centre of the summit of the cairn. The cairn is sub-circular in plan with no visible structural details. A concrete OS triangulation pillar is sited upon the north summit of the cairn. Excavations in 1897 recovered artefacts suggesting a broadly Bronze Age context for the use of the cairn, although the presence of leaf-shaped arrowheads in the artefact record may indicate a Neolithic presence at this site. (8-9)

NZ 0573 0740. How Tallon round barrow and cup marked stones. Scheduled RSM No 24510. A section of the modern field wall which runs over the cairn from east to west is included in the scheduling as it contains a number of prehistoric cup-marked stones. (10)

Cairn excavated in September 1897, initially under the supervision of Reginald Gatty, and subsequently observed by Sir Frederick Milbank. The two episodes were separated by "equinoctial gales and accompanying rain". 5 inhumations and an empty cist were found, along with Beaker and Food Vessel sherds and various flints. Gatty's sketch plan shows the mound as markedly oval in shape. The burials, in the order discovered, were as follows:

(i) a trench was dug on the south side of the mound, presumably aiming for the centre. Bones were found after just 3 feet, and apparently belonged to an adult male "in the prime of his life" [sic]. The body had apparently been placed no more than two feet below the surface of the cairn.

(ii) Continuing the trench in a northerly direction towards the centre of the mound, an upright stone was observed. Clearing the area around it, it proved to represent part of a collapsed cist that had been inserted into the summit of the mound. Within it were the remains of another adult male inhumation, accompanied by the remains of a Food Vessel, two broken barbed and tanged arrowheads (both appear to have been broken prior to deposition), a plano-convex knife and a scraper, plus an ox tooth.

(iii) A cist, empty, and apparently beneath the centre of the cairn.

(iv) Immediately above the central cist was another inhumation, accompanied by sherds of a Beaker and a flint implement which cannot be precisely identified among the surviving finds.

(v) "we went further forward with the digging, and near at hand we came upon what, I consider, was the body of a woman, as the bones and jaw were smaller". The published sketch plan suggests that by this stage, the labourers were not simply continuing in a northerly direction. One inhumation is shown west of the central cist, and another to the east. Their depth below the surface is not given. One is clearly this suggested female burial, the other is

(vi) "A little further on there was another body, and near to it" were some flints identified at the time as 3 scrapers and a sharp pointed flint, although again these cannot be definitely identified among the surviving assemblage. Some of the scrapers may have actually been utilised flakes.

Two leaf-shaped arrowheads are among a handful of items found during the excavations but lacking a context. They do not seem to have been associated directly with any of the burials. In any case, their presence need not indicate a Neolithic date for any of the burials of the cairn itself.

NB Laurie (1977) erroneously stated that Gatty and Milbank excavated the cairn again in 1936, something described by Coggins and Clews (1980) as "a myth". In fact, the finds and some archival material were transferred to the Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle, Co. Durham in 1936. (5, 9, 11)

Several decorated cobbles disturbed during the excavations were built into a wall over the cairn afterwards, without any record being made of them.(12)

The information for these panels of rock art was recorded by the NADRAP project. Assessments were made 2005-2008 building on the data in the Beckensall Archive.

The Bronze-Age barrow has been excavated over the last 150 years. Some of the marked stones have since been removed. During the recording process, two other possible single cup marked stones were noted and another stone with a single cup also reappeared. Other stones are undoubtedly in the wall or cairn, but removal from the site shouldn’t be discounted.

Barningham Moor 061 (ERA 863) this particular carving being the best example remaining. The cups are well formed and there is little doubt that those on side ‘A’ are artificial, with at least two cups displaying peck marks. On side ‘B’, several more indentations can be seen, although these may have been formed through natural weathering processes. All edges, apart from one are rounded, this may suggest it once formed part of a larger stone

Barningham Moor 143 (ERA 992) The stone could not be located during the project.

Barningham Moor 144 (ERA 993) This stone was originally found within How Tallon cairn and has a single cup mark. It could not be located during the project.

Barningham Moor 145 (ERA 994) This rectangular shaped stone was originally found in How Tallon cairn. It is recorded as having two sides bearing cup marks. It could not be located during the project.

Barningham Moor 146 (ERA 995) This small square portable stone was originally found in How Tallon cairn and bears five cups on one side. It could not be located during the project.

Barningham Moor 147 (ERA 996) This elongated portable stone was originally found in How Tallon cairn and bears approx. fifteen cups on one side. It could not be located during the project.
(13)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 6" Provisional Edition 1957
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 2
Source : Externally held archive reference
Source details : Bowes Museum Handbook 1953
Page(s) : 21
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 10
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : English Heritage Scheduling Amendment 23/12/94
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 11
Source : Reliquary and illustrated archaeologist
Source details : Gatty, RA. How Tallon.
Page(s) : 105-8
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 4, 1898
Source Number : 12
Source : British Prehistoric rock Art
Source details :
Page(s) : 46,148
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 13
Source : World Wide Web page
Source details : ERA England’s Rock Art Database < http://archaeologydataservice.ac.uk/era/section/access.jsf > [Accessed 28-MAY-2014]
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 3
Source : The archaeology of Yorkshire
Source details :
Page(s) : 244
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 3a
Source : Externally held archive reference
Source details : Yorkshire Post 25.9.1897
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 4
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : AGM/05-AUG-1977/OS Archaeology Division Field Investigator
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 5
Source : Council for British Archaeology Group 3: Archaeological newsbulletin
Source details : Laurie, T. Prehistoric Settlement on Barningham Moor, Co Durham
Page(s) : Nov-13
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 3, 1977
Source Number : 6
Source : Beaker pottery of Great Britain and Ireland
Source details :
Page(s) : 506
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 7
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : RE/23-SEPT-1981/OS Archaeology Division Field Investigator
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 8
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : Peter Topping/19-SEP-1991/RCHME: Durham SAMs Project
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 9
Source : Transactions of the Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland
Source details : Coggins, D and Clews, S. Archaeology in the Bowes Musuem
Page(s) : 17-30
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 5, 1980

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Early Bronze Age
Display Date : Early Bronze Age
Monument End Date : -1600
Monument Start Date : -2600
Monument Type : Round Cairn, Inhumation, Cist
Evidence : Earthwork, Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Later Prehistoric
Display Date : Later Prehistoric
Monument End Date : 43
Monument Start Date : -4000
Monument Type : Cup Marked Stone, Rock Art
Evidence : Enhanced Natural Feature
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Built in the modern period
Monument End Date :
Monument Start Date : 1901
Monument Type : Field Boundary, Wall
Evidence : Structure

Components and Objects:
Period : Early Bronze Age
Component Monument Type : Round Cairn, Inhumation, Cist
Object Type : BARBED AND TANGED ARROWHEAD, LEAF ARROWHEAD, PLANO CONVEX KNIFE
Object Material : Flint

Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : DU 110
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : NY 362
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : SMR Number (Durham)
External Cross Reference Number : 2504
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (National No.)
External Cross Reference Number : 24510
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Unified Designation System UID
External Cross Reference Number : 1010540
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Englands Rock Art (ERA ID)
External Cross Reference Number : 863
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Englands Rock Art (ERA ID)
External Cross Reference Number : 992
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Englands Rock Art (ERA ID)
External Cross Reference Number : 993
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Englands Rock Art (ERA ID)
External Cross Reference Number : 994
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Englands Rock Art (ERA ID)
External Cross Reference Number : 995
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Englands Rock Art (ERA ID)
External Cross Reference Number : 996
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : NZ 00 NE 1
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, HOW TALLON, BARNINGHAM MOOR
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1897-01-01
End Date : 1897-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, HOW TALLON, BARNINGHAM MOOR
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1936-01-01
End Date : 1936-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON NZ 00 NE 1
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1977-08-05
End Date : 1977-08-05
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON NZ 00 NE 1
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1981-09-23
End Date : 1981-09-23
Associated Activities : Primary, RCHME: DURHAM SAMS PROJECT
Activity type : MEASURED SURVEY
Start Date : 1991-06-01
End Date : 1991-12-01