White Barrow
White Barrow is a large Neolithic
The Neolithic Age, Era, or Period, or New Stone Age, was a period in the development of human technology, beginning about 9500 BC in some parts of the Middle East, and later in other parts of the world. It is traditionally considered as the last part of the Stone Age...

 long barrow
Long barrow
A long barrow is a prehistoric monument dating to the early Neolithic period. They are rectangular or trapezoidal tumuli or earth mounds traditionally interpreted as collective tombs...

 situated on a chalk
Chalk is a soft, white, porous sedimentary rock, a form of limestone composed of the mineral calcite. Calcite is calcium carbonate or CaCO3. It forms under reasonably deep marine conditions from the gradual accumulation of minute calcite plates shed from micro-organisms called coccolithophores....

A ridge is a geological feature consisting of a chain of mountains or hills that form a continuous elevated crest for some distance. Ridges are usually termed hills or mountains as well, depending on size. There are several main types of ridges:...

 on Salisbury Plain
Salisbury Plain
Salisbury Plain is a chalk plateau in central southern England covering . It is part of the Southern England Chalk Formation and largely lies within the county of Wiltshire, with a little in Hampshire. The plain is famous for its rich archaeology, including Stonehenge, one of England's best known...

 just outside of the village of Tilshead
Tilshead is a small village located in Wiltshire, in England. It lies approximately midway between the villages of Shrewton and Market Lavington, and is located at the source of the River Till. Its population in 2001 was 359, down from a peak of 989 inhabitants in 1951.. The White Barrow long...

 in Wiltshire
Wiltshire is a ceremonial county in South West England. It is landlocked and borders the counties of Dorset, Somerset, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire. It contains the unitary authority of Swindon and covers...

. It is a scheduled monument
Scheduled Ancient Monument
In the United Kingdom, a scheduled monument is a 'nationally important' archaeological site or historic building, given protection against unauthorized change. The various pieces of legislation used for legally protecting heritage assets from damage and destruction are grouped under the term...

, and is owned by the National Trust
National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
The National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty, usually known as the National Trust, is a conservation organisation in England, Wales and Northern Ireland...

. It was the first ancient monument to be purchased by the Trust.


White Barrow is 77.5 m long and approximately 47 m wide (including the surrounding ditch). It has never been fully excavated, but dating of materials found in and around it suggests that it dates from 3500-4000 BC, making it contemporary with other long barrows on Salisbury Plain, as well as the nearby causewayed enclosure
Causewayed enclosure
A causewayed enclosure is a type of large prehistoric earthwork common to the early Neolithic in Europe. More than 100 examples are recorded in France and 70 in England, while further sites are known in Scandinavia, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Ireland and Slovakia.The term "causewayed enclosure" is...

 Robin Hood's Ball
Robin Hood's Ball
Robin Hood’s Ball is a Neolithic causewayed enclosure located on Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire, England. It is approximately 5 miles from the town of Amesbury, and 2.5 miles from Stonehenge.-Etymology:...

. The antiquarian
An antiquarian or antiquary is an aficionado or student of antiquities or things of the past. More specifically, the term is used for those who study history with particular attention to ancient objects of art or science, archaeological and historic sites, or historic archives and manuscripts...

 Colt Hoare
Richard Colt Hoare
Sir Richard Colt Hoare, 2nd Baronet FRS was an English antiquarian, archaeologist, artist, and traveller of the 18th and 19th centuries, the first major figure in the detailed study of the history of his home county, Wiltshire.-Career:Hoare was descended from Sir Richard Hoare, Lord Mayor of...

 opened the mound in the 19th Century and found areas of black earth that he believed to be the remains of a wooden structured burial chamber.

National Trust Purchase

White Barrow was the first piece of land that the National Trust acquired purely in the interests of archaeological conservation. Prior to that, the Trust had mainly been concerned with open spaces, houses and gardens. The barrow, along with 2.75 acres (11,128.9 m²) of land was purchased by subscription in 1909 for the sum of £60, at a time when the MoD
Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom)
The Ministry of Defence is the United Kingdom government department responsible for implementation of government defence policy and is the headquarters of the British Armed Forces....

 was rapidly buying up land around it as part of Salisbury Plain Training Area.

Badger Exclusion

In 1998 a family of seven badgers was evicted from a sett
A badger sett or set is a badger's den, usually consisting of a network of tunnels. The largest setts are spacious enough to accommodate 15 or more animals, with up to of tunnels and as many as 40 openings. It takes many years for the animals to dig these large setts...

 they had dug into the barrow. A badger exclusion licence was obtained from English Nature
English Nature
English Nature was the United Kingdom government agency that promoted the conservation of wildlife, geology and wild places throughout England between 1990 and 2006...

, and English Heritage
English Heritage
English Heritage . is an executive non-departmental public body of the British Government sponsored by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport...

 gave scheduled monument consent. The badgers were lured to a new sett outside of the property, and the barrow was covered in chain link fencing to prevent animals from burrowing into it again. Finds in the badger spoil from the old sett included struck flints, Neolithic and Bronze Age
Bronze Age
The Bronze Age is a period characterized by the use of copper and its alloy bronze as the chief hard materials in the manufacture of some implements and weapons. Chronologically, it stands between the Stone Age and Iron Age...

 pottery, and part of a red deer
Red Deer
The red deer is one of the largest deer species. Depending on taxonomy, the red deer inhabits most of Europe, the Caucasus Mountains region, Asia Minor, parts of western Asia, and central Asia. It also inhabits the Atlas Mountains region between Morocco and Tunisia in northwestern Africa, being...

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