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HER Number:MDV74354
Name:Barrow to north-east of Elburton, Brixton

Summary

Bronze Age barrow surviving as an earthwork in 2014-2105 to the northeast of Elburton. The ring ditch is visible as a dark soilmark under excavation on aerial photographs taken in 2017. Excavation of the barrow in 2017 showed the surrounding ditch to be 4.0 to 5.0 metres wide and 1.5 to 1.9 metres deep. Within the barrow a stone structure was found under which was an inverted cremation urn. The stone structure appears to have been exposed for some time before the barrow was constructed over it.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 541 540
Map Sheet:SX55SW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishBrixton
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishBRIXTON

Protected Status

  • SHINE: Prehistoric enclosure, barrows and linear features north east of Elburton

Other References/Statuses: none recorded

Monument Type(s) and Dates

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

Full description

Best, J., 2006, Archaeological Fieldwalking and Trial Trenching for the Proposed Sherford New Community Development, 2-4 (Report - Excavation). SDV340475.

A quantity of Prehistoric material was recovered from inside the feature and from the surrounding field during fieldwalking including many tools and cores. Other details: Figures 3 & 4.

Smalley, R. A. J., 2006, Land near Plymouth, 7-8 (Report - Geophysical Survey). SDV340487.

Prehistoric ring ditch, Site 1, circa 30 metres diameter associated with a round barrow characteristic of the Bronze Age . An area of magnetic disturbance within the ring ditch, Site 5, may indicate former investigation into the feature. Two linear features, Site 3, run south from the barrow towards the field boundary. Other details: Sites 1, 3 & 5.

Scott Wilson, 2006, Sherford New Community: Environmental Statement (Report - Assessment). SDV340472.

Earthwork remains of a possible Bronze Age barrow circa 30 metres diameter. Other details: Site 97.

Jack, S. + Steadman, S., 2007, Sherford New Community: Environmental Statement - Cultural Heritage, Figure 9.2 Table 9.6 (Report - Assessment). SDV340474.

Other details: Site 97.

Bartlett, A. D. H., 2016, Sherford New Community, South Hams, Devon, Geophysical Surveys 2014-2015 (Report - Geophysical Survey). SDV361797.

This report is intended to accompany a full graphical presentation of the data and findings from a series of geophysical surveys undertaken in 2014-15 as part of a programme of archaeological investigations at the proposed Sherford New Community site near Plymouth, Devon.

The investigations were carried out in three phases, which each provided results which have previously been supplied as plans, extracts and summaries. The present report includes much of the content of the report on the 2014 survey (with some additional retrospective comments), and also includes similar accounts of the 2015 investigations.

The geophysical surveys have detected numerous archaeological sites and features, which in total are distributed broadly in accordance with previously recorded archaeological findings within the evaluation area. Archaeological activity is most concentrated towards the north and west of the site, but various previously unknown earthwork features and enclosures were identified elsewhere.

Evidence of significant prehistoric activity has been recorded at Elburton, immediately to the south-west of the site, where there have been various evaluations in recent years. Finds of Neolithic stone artefacts may indicate a rare Neolithic settlement site in the area. An archaeological evaluation in Sherford Road in Elburton revealed evidence of a possible Neolithic or Bronze Age settlement, with possible Iron Age occupation.

Two possible barrows survive as low earthworks within the Phase 1 area, to the north-east of Elburton. One earthwork, c. 30m in diameter, is located on a south-facing hill slope close to the line of a former stream, and late Neolithic – Bronze Age flint was recovered during fieldwalking surveys in the same field. A second possible barrow is located 50m to the south, on the other side of the stream. The geophysical survey recorded probable ring ditches associated with the barrows. The possible site of a third barrow, suggested by field name evidence, is located within the south-west corner of the development site.

The survey recorded two barrows at 8A (MDV74355) and 7A (map reference 96 and 97 in DBA, and in figure 6).

Area 2 (Fields north of Priority area; fields 2,6-8)
These fields (2, 6, 7, 9) contain a range of features comparable to those mentioned previously. These include a strong magnetic response from the ring ditch (7A; 97 in DBA) in field 7. Strong magnetic anomalies within the feature suggest the interior of the earthwork could have been disturbed.

Google, 2019, Google Earth Pro, EARTH.GOOGLE.COM 23-SEP-2017 ACCESSED 04-FEB-2020 (Aerial Photograph). SDV363088.

A dark ring-shaped soilmark is visible.

Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R., 2019-2020, The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping Survey. Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (AI&M, formerly NMP) (Interpretation). SDV362982.

The barrow is visible as a dark ring-shaped soilmark, approximately 5 metres wide and 37 metres in diameter, on aerial photographs taken in 2017 when it was under excavation. It was not visible on earlier available aerial imagery. The transcription is of the four quadrants visible on the aerial photograph.

Kendall, M., 2020, Update on archaeological work at Sherford New Community, South Devon, 5, 7, 8 (Article in Serial). SDV363875.

Excavation of the barrow by Wessex Archaeology has shown that the ditch around it was 4.0 to 5.0 metres wide and 1.5 to 1.9 metres deep. Evidence suggests that the ditch was cleaned out several times. Sherds of pottery and flint artefacts were recovered from the ditch including a barbed and tanged arrowhead and a worked crystal. These finds are likely to be residual in the ditch.
In addition a stone structure within the barrow has also been excavated and was found to have been built over an inverted cremation urn in the ground which was covered by a slab of limestone. The stone structure appears to have been exposed for some time before the barrow was constructed over it.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV340472Report - Assessment: Scott Wilson. 2006. Sherford New Community: Environmental Statement. Scott Wilson Report. D108531. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV340474Report - Assessment: Jack, S. + Steadman, S.. 2007. Sherford New Community: Environmental Statement - Cultural Heritage. Scott Wilson Report. A4 Stapled + Digital. Figure 9.2 Table 9.6.
SDV340475Report - Excavation: Best, J.. 2006. Archaeological Fieldwalking and Trial Trenching for the Proposed Sherford New Community Development. Exeter Archaeology Report. 06.44. A4 Stapled + Digital. 2-4.
SDV340487Report - Geophysical Survey: Smalley, R. A. J.. 2006. Land near Plymouth. Stratascan Report. J2121. A4 Stapled + Digital. 7-8.
SDV361797Report - Geophysical Survey: Bartlett, A. D. H.. 2016. Sherford New Community, South Hams, Devon, Geophysical Surveys 2014-2015. Bartlett-Clark Consultancy. Digital.
SDV362982Interpretation: Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R.. 2019-2020. The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping Survey. Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (AI&M, formerly NMP). Historic England Research Report. Digital.
SDV363088Aerial Photograph: Google. 2019. Google Earth Pro. Various. Digital. EARTH.GOOGLE.COM 23-SEP-2017 ACCESSED 04-FEB-2020. [Mapped feature: #117806 ]
SDV363875Article in Serial: Kendall, M.. 2020. Update on archaeological work at Sherford New Community, South Devon. Devon Archaeological Society Newsletter. 126. A4 Stapled + Digital. 5, 7, 8.

Associated Monuments

MDV74356Related to: Bronze Age enclosure northeast of Elburton (Monument)
MDV74355Related to: Prehistoric Barrow northeast of Elburton, Brixton (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4380 - Assessment for Sherford New Community
  • EDV4381 - Geophysical Survey for Sherford New Community
  • EDV4383 - Fieldwalking Survey of Proposed Sherford New Community Development
  • EDV8078 - Geophysical Survey: Sherford New Community, South Hams
  • EDV8098 - The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping (formerly NMP) Survey, Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (Ref: ACD2040)

Date Last Edited:Oct 2 2020 11:31AM