This browser is not fully supported by Historic England. Please update your browser to the latest version so that you get the best from our website.

Two cairns and a cist 300yds (270m) NW of Swincombe intake

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Two cairns and a cist 300yds (270m) NW of Swincombe intake

List entry Number: 1003189

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Devon

District: West Devon

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Dartmoor Forest

National Park: DARTMOOR

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 14-Jan-1970

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM - OCN

UID: DV 726

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Two kerbed cairns, one with a cist 315m north west of Swincombe Intake Works.

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. Round cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as earthen or rubble mounds, the latter predominating in areas of upland Britain where such raw materials were locally available in abundance. Round cairns may cover single or multiple burials and are sometimes surrounded by an outer ditch. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major visual element in the modern landscape. Their considerable variation in form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection. Dartmoor provides one of the best preserved and most dense concentrations of round cairns in south- western Britain. Cists are small rectangular stone structures used for burial purposes and date to the Bronze Age. On Dartmoor they are made up of regular stone slabs forming a box-like structure sometimes topped by a larger coverstone.

Despite having been cut by a newtake wall and the cist having been disturbed by partial early excavation the two kerbed cairns, one with a cist 315m north west of Swincombe Intake Works, survive comparatively well and indicate the different types of funerary practices associated with cairn construction and building. Both will contain important archaeological and environmental evidence relating to their relative chronology, changes in construction type, funerary and ritual practices and their overall landscape context. The fact that both have been incorporated into a later newtake wall indicates that they still formed an important and recognisable part of the landscape long after their original construction.

History

See Details.

Details

This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 10 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 areas of protection, includes two kerbed cairns, one of which has a cist, situated on the crest of a south east facing slope overlooking the valley of the river Swincombe. Both cairns have been bisected by the northern wall of Joan Ford’s newtake. The eastern cairn survives as a circular stony mound measuring up to 11m in diameter and 0.4m high which has an internal almost continuous ring of small stones forming a kerb with a diameter of 8m and measuring up to 0.4m high. This cairn contains a cist which measures up to 1m long by 0.6m wide and has a displaced coverstone. The western cairn survives as a low circular stony mound measuring up to 0.3m high surrounded by a retaining kerb of large stone slabs which measures approximately 6m in diameter and is visible both sides of the newtake wall. Approximately seven of the upright kerb slabs remain insitu, although one is leaning, a further stone has been incorporated into the wall and one more has been reused as a gatepost. Further archaeological remains in the vicinity are the subject of separate schedulings.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, (1994)
Other
PastScape Monument Nos:-443307 and 443310

National Grid Reference: SX 63037 72179, SX 63137 72157

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1003189 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 18-Oct-2017 at 05:35:58.

End of official listing