Out & About …

… on the North York Moors, or wherever I happen to be.

Three Howes — Heritage in flames

I felt a deep sadness upon coming across this recent burning on a bowl barrow on Gisborough Moor. These bowl barrows are historical landmarks, and government regulations explicitly state that burning “must not … damage important monuments”.1England, Natural. 2014. ‘Heather and Grass Burning: Rules and When You Need a Licence’, GOV.UK (GOV.UK) <https://www.gov.uk/guidance/heather-and-grass-burning-apply-for-a-licence#:~:text=damage%20important%20monuments> [accessed 1 November 2023]

I suppose those responsible might argue that the burning was a “cool burn”, not reaching the peat underneath. However, this perspective disregards the potential risk of the fire spiralling out of control, a situation which would not be not unheard of.

It’s worth noting that government regulations also prohibit burning activities from causing harm, disruptions, or hazards to road users. Moreover, the smoke generated should not pose a threat to human health or cause any inconvenience. Sadly, these regulations are all too frequently ignored.

This specific bowl barrow, part of a trio aptly named Three Howes, is the northernmost among them2‘Three Round Barrows 800m South of Belmanbank Gate, Guisborough – 1015395 | Historic England’. 2023. Historicengland.org.uk <https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1015395?section=official-list-entry> [accessed 1 November 2023]. Built between 2400-1500 BC, it originally stood as a hemispherical mound, resembling an inverted bowl, measuring 14 metres in diameter. In its prime, it would have housed a tomb containing one or more burials, either inhumations or cremations, which, from what I understand, remain undisturbed. The stone cairn standing atop the barrow is a comparatively recent addition.






2 responses to “Three Howes — Heritage in flames”

  1. Martin deacy avatar
    Martin deacy

    Please add me to mailing list

    1. Fhithich avatar

      I think I’ve done this correctly, Martin. There used to be an option on the page but it seems to have disappeared when I changed the theme. I’ll put it on my ToDo list.

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