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Monument details

HER Number:TR 23 NW 1
Type of record:Monument
Name:Bowl Barrow, Cherry Garden Hill, Folkestone

Summary

Cherry Gardens Hill Tumulus, on the property of the Folkestone Waterworks Company. A primary crouched interment was found in the centre of the tumulus. A small piece of rough ironstone was found at the feet, c. eighteen inches above the skeleton was a thin slab of Folkestone stone, broken, but probably shaped on three sides. A secondary burial aligned north-west to south-east was found on the edge of the tumulus (see also TR 23 NW 25). The barrow was slightly damaged by the construction of a pillbox on its summit in 1940 (TR 23 NW**). The barrow is now c. 1.3m high and is still crowned by the pillbox; its perimeter has been enlarged by spoil from the 1940 digging.


Grid Reference:TR 2083 3801
Map Sheet:TR23NW
Parish:FOLKESTONE, SHEPWAY, KENT

Monument Types

Associated Finds

  • WORKED OBJECT (Bronze Age - 2350 BC to 701 BC)
Protected Status:Scheduled Monument 1011771: BOWL BARROW AND PILLBOX ON CHERRY GARDEN HILL

Full description

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(TR 20833801) Tumulus (NR) (1)

Cherry Gardens Hill Tumulus, on the property of the Folkestone Waterworks Company. A primary crouched interment was found in the centre of the tumulus, with the body aligned east-west. It was probably male and c.25-35 years old at its death, and c.5' 7" tall. A small piece of rough ironstone was found at the feet, c. eighteen inches above the skeleton was a thin slab of Folkestone stone, broken, but probably shaped on three sides. The skeleton was surrounded by a blackish layer, but with no evidence of fire. A secondary burial aligned north-west to south-east was found on the edge of the tumulus (see also TR 23 NW 25). The barrow was slightly damaged by the construction of a pillbox on its summit in 1940 (TR 23 NW**). The barrow is now c. 1.3m high and is still crowned by the pillbox; its perimeter has been enlarged by spoil from the 1940 digging. The bones from the primary interment are in Folkestone Museum; the other finds cannot be traced.(3, 4, 6).

Both the barrow and the pillbox are Scheduled (National Monument Number 25472).

Additional Information not recorded(5, 7).

Mentioned in report(8).

From the National Heritage List for England:

The monument includes a Bronze Age bowl barrow and a pillbox situated on a steeply sided spur which projects from a ridge of the Kent Downs. The bowl barrow has a roughly circular mound 20m in diameter and around 1.3m high, which has been altered by the deposition of additional, excavated material around its circumference at a later date. The mound is surrounded by a ditch from which material used to construct the barrow was excavated. This has become infilled over the years, but survives as a buried feature c.2m wide. The centre of the barrow was disturbed by the construction of a pillbox during World War II, when a primary, crouched human burial was discovered. A second burial was also found towards the edge of the barrow mound. The pillbox, which would have been used mainly as a look-out post, is a low, hexagonal structure built of reinforced concrete, with a diameter of c.7m. It has a lobbyed entrance on its southern side, and each of its six faces are pierced by rectangular machine gun slits. Both the entrance and the gun slits have since been blocked with modern concrete.
Bowl barrows, the most numerous form of round barrow, are funerary monuments dating from the Late Neolithic period to the Late Bronze Age, with most examples belonging to the period 2400-1500 BC. They were constructed as earthen or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Often superficially similar, although differing widely in size, they exhibit regional variations in form and a diversity of burial practices. There are over 10,000 surviving bowl barrows recorded nationally (many more have already been destroyed), occurring across most of lowland Britain. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable variation of form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisations amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

Although the bowl barrow on Cherry Garden Hill has been been the subject of some disturbance caused by the construction of the later pillbox, it survives reasonably well, and partial excavation has demonstrated that it will contain archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed. Pillboxes are small, squat defensive buildings constructed to provide protection for vulnerable areas threatened with German invasion during both World Wars, but particularly during World War II. There are around ten main forms, of which type 24, the irregular hexagonal form, is the most common. They are especially representative of World War II defensive structures; around 18,000 are thought to have been built nationally between 1939-1945, of which c.6,000 may remain. Despite some later disturbance, the pillbox on Cherry Garden Hill survives comparatively well, and illustrates the importance of the Downs to the north of the particularly vulnerable Kent coast as one of the first lines of defence during World War II.


<1> OS 6" 1962 (OS Card Reference). SKE48371.

<3> Stebbing, W. P. D., 1944, Cherry Garden Hill Tumulus, Folkestone, Arch Cant 56 1943 28-33 (W P D Stebbing & J E Cave) (Article in serial). SKE8035.

<4> Folkestone Mus Corr & Notes (OS Card Reference). SKE43430.

<5> AM Eng & Wales 1961 58 (OS Card Reference). SKE33008.

<6> Wardale, C., 1964, Field report for monument TR 23 NW 1 - April, 1964 (Unpublished document). SKE5586.

<7> 1943, "WATERWORKS HILL TUMULUS" (Collection). SKE6497.

<8> RPS Clouston, 1994, Folkestone & Dover Water services: Bluehouse to Cherry Garden Trunk Main (Unpublished document). SKE6910.

Sources and further reading

Cross-ref. Source description
<1>OS Card Reference: OS 6" 1962.
<3>Article in serial: Stebbing, W. P. D.. 1944. Cherry Garden Hill Tumulus, Folkestone. LVI pages 28 - 33. Arch Cant 56 1943 28-33 (W P D Stebbing & J E Cave).
<4>OS Card Reference: Folkestone Mus Corr & Notes.
<5>OS Card Reference: AM Eng & Wales 1961 58.
<6>Unpublished document: Wardale, C.. 1964. Field report for monument TR 23 NW 1 - April, 1964.
<7>Collection: 1943. "WATERWORKS HILL TUMULUS".
<8>Unpublished document: RPS Clouston. 1994. Folkestone & Dover Water services: Bluehouse to Cherry Garden Trunk Main.