Landscape view
Google map
Source: Wikimedia Commons

White Barrow is a Neolithic long barrow below the crest of Copehill Down on Salisbury Plain, just outside the village of Tilshead in Wiltshire, England. Now owned by the National Trust, it is about 90 metres (295 ft) in length, 50 metres (164 ft) wide and 2 metres (6.6 ft) high.[1] It has never been fully excavated, but dating material from a badger’s sett dug into the barrow,[a]The material includes flint tools and Neolithic pottery.[1] suggests that it dates from about 3000 to 3500 BCE.[1] A geophysical survey by English Heritage in 1997 found evidence of a possible burial chamber or mortuary cairn inside the barrow, and an arc of post pits at its eastern end. A former trackway crossing the site from southwest to northeast was also found.[2]

The excavating badger family was enticed away to a new home by honey-coated peanuts in 1998, and following the granting of a badger exclusion licence from English Nature the barrow was covered in chain-link fencing to prevent animals from burrowing into it again and destroying archaeological evidence.[1]

White Barrow was the first piece of land that the National Trust acquired purely in the interests of archaeological conservation. Until then it had largely been concerned with open spaces, houses and gardens. The barrow, along with 2.75 acres (1.11 ha) of surrounding land, was purchased by subscription in 1909 for £60, at a time when the War Office was rapidly buying up land around it as part of the Salisbury Plain Training Area.[3]

The barrow was designated as a scheduled monument in 1960.[4]

Notes[+]

Citations



Bibliography


Historic England. WHITE BARROW, TILSHEAD 4 LONG BARROW, TILSHEAD, WILTSHIRE. REPORT ON GEOPHYSICAL SURVEYS, MAY 1997. https://research.historicengland.org.uk/Report.aspx?i=6600.
Historic England. “White Barrow, a Long Barrow.” National Heritage List for England, https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1018159.
Morgan Evans, David, et al. The Remains of Distant Times: Archaeology and the National Trust. Boydell & Brewer, 1996.