MSO6801 - Bronze Age burial cairn on Long Holcombe (Monument)


A Bronze Age burial cairn is visible as a flat topped stony mound on aerial photographs taken in 1973. It is uneven, suggesting stone robbing has occurred. It was previously identified as a round barrow and was known as 'One Barrow'.

Please read the Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record .

Type and Period (2)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

SS 766 355 A barrow is depicted on the 1st edition Ordnance Survey mapping of 1809, recorded as 'One Barrow Down'. [1] SS 766355 approx. Exmoor 23. Field investigation by both the Ordnance Survey, and Grinsell and Norman Quinnell, revealed no trace of a barrow in the area. [2,3] MacDermot noted the inaccuracy of many of the Exmoor 1st Edition 1 inch maps, indicating that the positioning information of the barrow may be incorrect. [2-4] Comparison of the 1st Edition Ordnance Survey 1809 mapping [1] and the modern Ordnance Survey map indicated that One Barrow should be 1 kilometre further northeast than had been supposed. A moss covered mound some 3 to 3.5 metres in diameter and 0.5 metres high was located at SS 774 360 on Wintershead Common, sometimes mis named Long Holcombe, in February 1980. It appears to be a small Bronze Age round barrow, with two stones protruding, one sandstone, one quartz, and probing indicated others. A line of rushes grew about two thirds of the way round the circumference with a gap to the west. The mound is isolated and there seems no evidence that the land has ever been cleared or cultivated. (It seems that it is not One Barrow which is erroneously shown on the 1st Edition Ordnance Survey map, but the position of the county boundary). The barrow appears to be in the location discovered by Eardley-Wilmot, but the relationship between the barrow and the mis-placed boundary has led to previous mis-siting. [1,6,7] Centred at SS 7731 3600 and located on the summit of Long Holcombe is a prehistoric cairn. It comprises a largely turf and moss-covered, flat-topped stony mound 15.3 metres in diameter and 0.4 metres high. Its summit is uneven suggesting some minor stone robbing, however the bulk of the mound is intact. The cairn has extensive views in all directions and it lies 106 metres northwest of a standing stone (MSO7084). Surveyed at 1:2500 scale, December 94. [8,9] The cairn described above is visible on aerial photographs as a slight earthwork on Long Holcombe. It lies within an area of peat cutting and some of the damage mentioned above may be due to this activity. [10,11] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [13] The feature is depicted on the 2021 MasterMap data at SS 7730 3600 and is labelled "Cairn". [14]

Sources/Archives (13)

  • <1>XY Map: Ordnance Survey. 1809. 1" 1st edition. [Mapped feature: #47720 Original quoted grid reference, ]
  • <2> Article in serial: Grinsell, L.V.. 1969. Somerset Barrows. Part I: West and South. Proceedings of the Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. 113. p 17, 33.
  • <3> Unpublished document: PALMER, JP. Mid 1960s. Field Investigators Comments. Ordnance Survey visit, F1, 2 September 1965.
  • <4> Monograph: MacDermot, E.T.. 1973. The History of the Forest of Exmoor. David and Charles Limited. Revised Edition. 25.
  • <6> Unpublished document: Eardley-Wilmot, H. March 1980. Eardley-Wilmot, H to Somerset County Council.
  • <7>XY Unpublished document: Eardley-Wilmot, H. 15.9.1980. Eardley-Wilmot, H to Somerset County Council. [Mapped feature: #47723 Second quoted grid reference, ]
  • <8> Serial: Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. 1851-. Proceedings of the Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. Volume 124 (1980), 115-6.
  • <9> Unpublished document: Wilson-North, R.. Various. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 14 December 1994.
  • <10> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR OS/73086 821-22 (17 April 1973).
  • <11> Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 73 NE. MD002190.
  • <12> Report: Riley, H.. 2017. Archaeological Walkover Survey: Long Holcombe, Exmoor, Exmoor Mires Partnership ELH17, Project Report.
  • <13> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 35001, Extant 17 November 2021.
  • <14>XY Map: Ordnance Survey. 2021. MasterMap data. 1:2,500. [Mapped feature: #47724 Location of feature, ]

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO48
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO10980
  • Local List Status (Unassessed)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 73 NE7
  • National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 35001
  • Somerset SMR PRN (Somerset): 33119



Grid reference Centred SS 7700 3575 (800m by 517m) (3 map features)
Map sheet SS73NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (3)

Record last edited

Nov 17 2021 9:05AM


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