MSO6824 - Rexy Barrow (Monument)


A Bronze Age bowl barrow which 18 metres in diameter and 1.2 metres high, and is possibly surrounded by a ditch. The uneven surface may be due to animal erosion as there is no evidence for excavation or robbing.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

[SS 77024196] Tumulus (NR) [1] Rexy Barrow, round barrow, Little Buscombe. Scheduled. [2] This is a large undisturbed bowl barrow (Grinsell's Exmoor No.5). See GP AO/65/128/6. 1/2500 survey revised. [3] Rexy Barrow (NR) [4] SS 7702 4195. Exmoor 5. Bowl barrow 20 paces diameter and 3.5 feet high. Visited by Grinsell and Charles Whybrow 22 May 1961. It is marked as Rexy Barrow on the 1 inch Ordnance Survey Exmoor Tourist Map 1967, which may possibly be another form of Exaborough on a 17th Century name. [5] No change. [6] (SS 77024196) Rexy Barrow (NR) [7] Rexy Barrow is centred at SS 7702 4196. It lies on the spine of Great Buscombe ridge at 441 metres above Ordnance Datum, and has extensive visibility to the east, and also southwards towards Ashcombe. To the northeast it has an open aspect towards Lanacombe, whilst to the north views are obscured. Westwards the peat covered plateau known as "The Chains" is visible. The barrow is well preserved, with a diameter of 18 metres and a summit diameter of 11.5 metres. It has steep, well defined sides 1.2 metres in height and a flat top. There is no evidence for any excavation or robbing, although the surface of the barrow is uneven, possibly due to the passage of animal and other traffic over and around it - there are certainly marked tracks leading to the barrow from the northeast and south-south-west. It is covered in a mixture of moor grass and reeds, and a pronounced swathe of reeds around the mound may indicate the presence of a silted ditch, although there is now no earthwork evidence for it. [8] The barrow described above is clearly visible on aerial photographs as a substantial mound surrounded by a crop mark ditch. It lies within an extensive area of 19th Century drainage ditches constructed by the Knight family as part of their land improvement attempts, and it is not clear whether this activity has affected the monument. [9,10] The barrow is 1 metre high and 20 metres in diameter. The site is dry despite being in a wet moor area. A few stones show on the periphery. [11] The Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment of 2009 gave the site a survival score of 3. [14] The site was surveyed in April 2015 as part of the 2015 Exmoor Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment. It was given a survival score of 0. [16] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [17] Rexy Barrow is depicted and labelled on the 2021 MasterMap data. [18]

Sources/Archives (18)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1962. 6 Inch Map: 1962. 1:10560.
  • <2> Index: Department of the Environment (IAM). 1978. List of Ancient Monuments of England and Wales 1978. P. 117.
  • <3> Unpublished document: PALMER, JP. Mid 1960s. Field Investigators Comments. Ordnance Survey visit, F1, 1 July 1965.
  • <4> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1967. Exmoor Tourist Map. 1 Inch.
  • <5> Article in serial: Grinsell, L.V.. 1969. Somerset Barrows. Part I: West and South. Proceedings of the Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. 113. 16, 32.
  • <6> Unpublished document: Fletcher, M.J.. Field Investigators Comments. Ordnance Survey visit, F2, 9 February 1975.
  • <7> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1981. 1:10,000, 1981. SS74S.
  • <8> Unpublished document: Wilson-North, R.. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 10 May 1994.
  • <9> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. CPE/UK/1980 3156-57. 11/04/1947.
  • <10> Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 74 SE. MD002183.
  • <11> Report: Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission. Field Monument Warden Report. S Weston, 18 July 1983.
  • <12> Aerial photograph: 1947. LHL CPE/UK/1980. 3150.
  • <13> Unpublished document: McDonnell, R.. 1980. Gazetteer of Sites in the Exmoor National Park Identified through Aerial Photography. SS7741.
  • <14> Report: Bray, L.S.. 2010. Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment 2009, Exmoor National Park.
  • <15> Report: R.R.J. McDonnell. 1992. Exmoor Forest Estate (Simonsbath) Stage 1: Assessment and Evaluation of the Existing Archaeological Data.
  • <16> Report: Gent, T. and Manning, P.. 2015. Exmoor National Park Scheduled Monument Condition Survey 2015.
  • <17> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 35234, Extant 18 May 2021.
  • <18>XY Map: Ordnance Survey. 2021. MasterMap data. 1:2,500. [Mapped feature: #38450 ]



Grid reference Centred SS 7701 4195 (28m by 28m)
Map sheet SS74SE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (4)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO82
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO10906
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 74 SE11
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 35234
  • Somerset SMR PRN (Somerset): 33045

Record last edited

May 18 2021 1:35PM


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