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HER Number:MDV124652
Name:Bowl Barrow Cemetery on Bursdon Moor, Hartland


Group of four bowl barrows on Bursdon Moor. They survive comparatively well despite reduction in height due to cultivation.


Grid Reference:SS 268 200
Map Sheet:SS22SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishHartland
Ecclesiastical ParishHARTLAND

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses: none recorded

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • BARROW CEMETERY (Bronze Age - 2200 BC to 701 BC (Between))

Full description

Historic England, Round Barrow Cemetery 920m southwest of Higher Welsford and Four Barrows on Bursdon Moor, 270m northwest of Summerville Cross (Correspondence). SDV362760.

Scheduled monument consent granted, subject to conditions, concerning removal and replacement of fencing and scrub management.

Ordnance Survey, 2019, MasterMap 2019 (Cartographic). SDV362729.

Tumuli marked.

Historic England, 2019, National Heritage List for England, 1019258 (National Heritage List for England). SDV362730.

Four bowl barrows on Bursdon Moor, 270 metres northwest of Summerville Cross.
Reasons for Designation
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 protection.
Despite reduction in height through cultivation, and disturbance through partial excavation, the four bowl barrows on Bursdon Moor, 270m north west of Summerville Cross survive comparatively well and will contain archaeological and environmental information relating to the monument and its surrounding landscape. Other contemporary monuments are visible from this barrow group. .
This monument, which falls into four separate areas of protection, includes four bowl barrows situated on a prominent upland ridge known as Bursdon Moor, with commanding views to the coast and Lundy Island. They form part of a dispersed group of barrows. The westernmost barrow survives as a circular flat-topped mound 26m in diameter and 0.9m high. The surrounding quarry ditch from which material to construct the mound was derived is preserved as a buried feature approximately 3m wide. The mound has been cut by a central depression 3.2m long, 1.1m wide and 0.2m deep. The northernmost barrow survives as a circular mound 22.8m in diameter and 0.7m high, of irregular profile and with an elongated depression on the western side measuring 5.2m long, 4m wide and up to 0.3m deep. The surrounding quarry ditch is visible on the north west side, and partially to the north, where it measures 3.6m wide and 0.1m deep. Elsewhere, it is preserved as a buried feature. The easternmost mound lies on a scarp edge and survives as a circular mound 19.8m in diameter and 0.6m high. It is also of irregular profile and the quarry ditch survives as a buried feature approximately 3m wide. The southernmost barrow has a circular mound 22.8m in diameter and 0.5m high. It is surrounded by a quarry ditch visible on the western side where it measures 3.6m wide and 0.2m deep, although elsewhere it survives as a buried feature. There is a central depression in the mound measuring 4.2m square and 0.2m deep. The upcast from this has been placed to the south west in a roughly oval bank measuring 2.1m long, 1.3m wide and 0.3m high.
Date first listed: 13th September 2000

Sources / Further Reading

SDV362729Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2019. MasterMap 2019. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #115023 ]
SDV362730National Heritage List for England: Historic England. 2019. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital. 1019258.
SDV362760Correspondence: Historic England. Round Barrow Cemetery 920m southwest of Higher Welsford and Four Barrows on Bursdon Moor, 270m northwest of Summerville Cross. Scheduled Monument Consent Letter. Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV12407Parent of: Bowl Barrow east of Bursdon Moor Cross, Hartland (Monument)
MDV12408Parent of: Bowl Barrow on Bursdon Moor, Hartland (Monument)
MDV12409Parent of: Bowl Barrow on Bursdon Moor, Hartland (Monument)
MDV12415Parent of: Bowl Barrow on Bursdon Moor, Hartland (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Jan 16 2019 2:23PM