Two hut circles E of Foxes Holt
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1002599
Date first listed: 20-Jun-1972
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: West Devon (District Authority)
Parish: South Tawton
National Park: DARTMOOR
National Grid Reference: SX 64726 92303, SX 64742 92315
Two stone hut circles 520m south west of Rockside.
Reasons for Designation
Dartmoor is the largest expanse of open moorland in southern Britain and, because of exceptional conditions of preservation, it is also one of the most complete examples of an upland relict landscape in the whole country. The great wealth and diversity of archaeological remains provide direct evidence for human exploitation of the Moor from the early prehistoric period onwards. The well-preserved and often visible relationship between settlement sites, major land boundaries, trackways, ceremonial and funerary monuments as well as later industrial remains, gives significant insights into successive changes in the pattern of land use through time. Stone hut circles and hut settlements were the dwelling places of prehistoric farmers on Dartmoor. They mostly date from the Bronze Age, with the earliest examples on the Moor in this building tradition dating to about 1700 BC. The stone-based round houses consist of low walls or banks enclosing a circular floor area; remains of the turf or thatch roof are not preserved. The huts may occur singly or in small or large groups and may lie in the open or be enclosed by a bank of earth and stone. Although they are common on the Moor, their longevity and their relationship with other monument types provide important information on the diversity of social organisation and farming practices amongst prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period.
Despite being cut by a modern field boundary, the two stone hut circles 520m south west of Rockside survive comparatively well, and that they actually survive at all in an area of enclosed land which has been more intensely farmed through time than other areas of Dartmoor is even more remarkable. On the open moor there are other examples but these are occupying much more favoured agricultural land and are probably representatives of a once much greater settlement pattern in this area. They will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to their construction, longevity, agricultural practices, domestic arrangements and overall landscape context.
This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 11 November 2015. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.
The monument, which falls into two separate areas of protection, includes two stone hut circles situated in enclosed land on the lower north east facing slopes of Cosdon Hill. The stone hut circles survive as circular internal areas of up to 8m in diameter defined by partly coursed walls of approximately 1m wide and 0.4m high. Both stone hut circles are bisected by a modern field boundary bank.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: DV 776
Legacy System: RSM - OCN
Books and journals
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities Vol Two - The North, (1992)
PastScape Monument No:-444175
This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing