MDE1431 - Anstey Barrow (Monument)


A Bronze Age round barrow on the eastern summit of East Anstey Common, measuring 9.5 metres in diameter and 1 metre in height. It has a central hollow surrounded by spoil, and traces of a surrounding ditch. Summary from record MMO118: A Bronze Age round barrow visible as an earthwork measuring 9.5m in diameter and 1m in height. It has a central hollow surrounded by spoil and a surrounding ditch is visible on the NW and NE sides.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

(SS 87352858) Anstey Barrow. [1] A round barrow 12.0 metres in diameter and 1.5 metres high, with no visible ditch. Mutilated in the centre and on the north side. Situated in moorland. [2] SS 87357 28585. This barrow is situated at about 332 metres abovesea level on the eastern summit of East Anstey Common. The rather flattish ridge top is mainly covered by rough grass with a scattering of heather and bracken. The barrow does not appear to be scheduled. [4] The barrow is evident as a turf, bracken and gorse covered, flat-topped, earth and stone mound 9.5 metres in diameter and 1metre in height. There is a central hollow, about 2 metres in diameter and 0.7 metres deep accessed by the remains of an open `excavation' trench, from the east-south-east. The spoil has been dumped around the hollow and along both sides of the trench, raising the barrow height by some 0.4 metres. There are remains of a surrounding ditch and bank, about 1.5 metres wide and 0.7 metres high, now in a very poor condition and best seen around the north-west and northeast. Elsewhere it has either gone, eroded or is hidden under the gorse around the southern arc. Published survey accepted. [3-5] A round barrow is visible as an earthwork on aerial photographs, centred on circa SS 8735 2858. The mound is roughly circular in shape, although appears slightly irregular in plan, measuring up to circa 11 metres in diameter. The central hollow is visible, but vegetation obscures any trace of surviving surrounding ditch or outer bank. [6-8] The round barrow is 13.7 metres in diameter and 1.07 metres high. [9] This site is probably a bell barrow as it has an outer bank. Just north of the centre is small hole 457 milimetres deep. [10] The barrow is 14 paces in diameter and 3.5 feet high. It was visited by R. Rainbird Clarke on 28 May 1939 who noted traces of a ditch and bank. Grinsell and Whybrow visited the site on 23 May 1961. [11] It was noted during a site visit that the monument was in an area of rough grazing featuring heather, gorse and bracken. The south and southwestern parts of the barrow had become inaccessable due to mature gorse, which was providing shelter for sheep and causing the bare earth beneath to be eroded. The remainder of the barrow had little vegetation cover and was also suffering from erosion. [12] The Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment of 2009 gave the site a survival score of 8. [13] The site was surveyed in June 2015 as part of the 2015 Exmoor Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment. It was given a survival score of 7. [14] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [15]

Sources/Archives (15)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
  • <2> Unpublished document: Quinnell, N.V.. Field Investigators Comments. Ordnance Survey visit, 29 March 1970.
  • <3> Unpublished document: Sainsbury, I.S.S. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 15 December 1995.
  • <4> Index: English Heritage. 1987. County List of Scheduled Ancient Monuments.
  • <5> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1970. 1:2500 Map. 1:2500. Revision. Sheet SS 8728.
  • <6> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR RAF 540/860 4133-4 (2 September 1952).
  • <7> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR OS/95024 026 (12 March 1995).
  • <8> Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 82 NE. MD002200.
  • <9> Report: Weston, S.. 1982. Field Monument Warden Visit. Site visit.
  • <10> Index: Ministry of Works. 1968. List of Ancient Monuments.
  • <11> Article in serial: Grinsell, L.V.. 1970. The Barrows of North Devon. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 28. P. 117.
  • <12> Report: Juleff, G.. 2003. English Heritage site visit forms.
  • <13> Report: Bray, L.S.. 2010. Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment 2009, Exmoor National Park.
  • <14> Report: Gent, T. and Manning, P.. 2015. Exmoor National Park Scheduled Monument Condition Survey 2015. Archaedia.
  • <15> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 35644, Extant 25 January 2022.



Grid reference Centred SS 8735 2858 (20m by 24m)
Map sheet SS82NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (5)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 1179
  • Devon SMR: SS82NE/1
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE20084
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO118
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 82 NE4
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 35644
  • Scheduled Monument (County Number): 647

Record last edited

Jan 25 2022 4:38PM


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