Cobdale
Bronze Age Round Barrows
Southwest of Huggate, East Riding of Yorkshire. Elevation: 192m OSD.  OS Map Ref SE85885394
OS Maps - Landranger 106 (Market Weighton), Explorer 294 (Market Weighton & Yorkshire Wolds Central)


One of the round barrows of the Cobdale group
View looking west over one of the barrows of the Cobdale group.
This is a group of eight, possibly nine round barrows on a plateau of land just to the north of Cobdale Cottage towards the western edge of the Yorkshire Wolds. Many have been badly damaged due to being under cultivation for a long period but at least one is clearly visible to the east of Cobdale Lane and is shown in the picture above. Eight of the barrows were excavated by JR Mortimer in 1882 (numbered 244, 246, 247, 248, Handled beaker from Cobdale - Mortimer 1905 Fig. 944249, 250, 251, 264 in Mortimer 1905) however he noted that several of them had already been dug into by a Mr. J. Silburn in the middle of the 18th century as well as various tenants who had farmed the land. Despite this Mortimer was able to recover and document many finds from the barrows which contained a mixture of inhumations and cremations, one burial was apparently in a wickerwork coffin covered over by a wooden roof, another burial was also beneath a wooden roofed structure while two other burials seem to have been in graves lined with wooden panels. One set of cremation remains was found within an inverted collared urn with another urn filled with burnt bone noted as having been recovered the previous year but the rest of the cremations appear not to have been placed in containers although bone and bronze pins found within the barrows could have been used used to tie hide bags containing cremation remains. As well as urns Mortimer also recorded several food vessels and small incense or 'accessory' cups as well as an unusual handled beaker (see inset image) that accompanied the burial of a child plus sherds from several other pottery vessels. Flint fragments, a flint knife, a barbed and tanged arrowhead and the broken end of a stone axe were also found during the excavations.
Sadly little remains to be seen at the site today with most of the barrows badly damaged by ploughing, English Heritage record them as having been between 20-35 metres in diametre, the image above is probably barrow number No 21110 at SE85885392 which measures about a metre and a half high, the rest of what remains all being under a metre in height.

Date: Bronze Age

References:

Mortimer, J.R. 1905. Forty Years Researches in British and Saxon Burial Mounds of East Yorkshire. London: Brown & Sons.

Pastscape: 61747, 61766, 61769, NMR Numbers: SE 85 SE 1, SE 85 SE 8, SE 85 SE 9,

Record of Scheduled Monuments: 21109, 21110, 21111, 21112, 21113, 21114

Stoertz, C. 1997. Ancient Landscapes of the Yorkshire Wolds. Aerial photographic transcription and analysis. RCHME.

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