Enclosure and hut circles on Erme Plains E of River Erme
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1002606
Date first listed: 05-Jun-1972
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This copy shows the entry on 18-Mar-2019 at 23:41:30.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: South Hams (District Authority)
National Park: DARTMOOR
National Grid Reference: SX 63845 64712
Part of a stone hut circle settlement 360m SSW of the confluence of Hook Lake and River Erme.
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 some partial subsequent re-use and rebuilding of one of the stone hut circles the part of a stone hut circle settlement with enclosure 360m SSW of the confluence of Hook Lake and River Erme survives well and given the accumulations of peat surrounding it will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, development, use, social organisation, agricultural practice, domestic arrangements, subsequent partial re-use and overall landscape context.
This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 11 November 2015. This 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 includes part of a stone hut circle settlement situated on the Erme Plains at the foot of Quickbeam Hill to the east of the River Erme. The settlement survives as a group of four stone hut circles which vary in size from 4m up to 7m in diameter internally and are defined by rubble built walls measuring up to 2m wide and 0.4m high and a single enclosure. Three of the stone hut circles are freestanding and to the north east the largest hut circle of the group is attached to the outside of an irregular shaped low walled enclosure. This hut appears to have been repaired and re-used subsequently. Where visible the entrances to the hut circles predominantly face to the south east. The whole settlement has been subject to peat accumulation.
Further archaeological remains survive within the immediate vicinity, some are scheduled but others are not included because they have not been formally assessed.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: DV 807
Legacy System: RSM - OCN
Books and journals
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, Volume Four – The South-East , (1993)
PastScape Monument No:-442171
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