Three prehistoric house platforms on south-east Roughtor, 1km NNW of Fernacre Farm

Overview

Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
1008232
Date first listed:
02-Mar-1994

Map

Ordnance survey map of Three prehistoric house platforms on south-east Roughtor, 1km NNW of Fernacre Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District:
Cornwall (Unitary Authority)
Parish:
St. Breward
National Grid Reference:
SX 14725 80707

Reasons for Designation

Bodmin Moor, the largest of the Cornish granite uplands, has long been recognised to have exceptional preservation of archaeological remains. The Moor has been the subject of detailed archaeological survey and is one of the best recorded upland landscapes in England. The extensive relict landscapes of prehistoric, medieval and post-medieval date provide direct evidence for human exploitation of the Moor from the earliest prehistoric period onwards. The well-preserved and often visible relationship between settlement sites, field-systems, ceremonial and funerary monuments as well as later industrial remains provides significant insights into successive changes in the pattern of land use through time. House platforms are one of several known types of settlement site dating from the Neolithic to the Romano-British periods (from c.3000 BC to c.AD 400). Individual house platforms may be dated by excavation or by their association with other monuments of known date. They consist of levelled stances, variously circular, ovoid or sub-rectangular in shape, on which rectangular or circular buildings were constructed. The timber uprights forming the frames of the buildings have not survived, but excavations have revealed their post- holes and associated domestic debris. Where they occur in stony areas, rubble cleared from the platforms may be simply pushed to the edges of each stance or aggregated to form a rough wall. House platforms may occur singly or in groups, and in the open or enclosed by a boulder and rubble wall. House platforms may also form an element contained within hillforts dating to the Neolithic and Iron Age periods. At least 20 house platforms are known from Bodmin Moor, a figure which is expected to increase with future recognition and which forms an important sub-group of the national total.

The house platforms on Roughtor have survived well, without excavation or any other visible or recorded disturbance. Their proximity to the Neolithic hilltop enclosure on Roughtor, itself containing numerous house platforms, provides a rare and valuable insight into the complex nature of settlement in the earlier prehistoric period. Their presence near Bronze Age and medieval settlements and field systems demonstrates well the development of land use on this remote hillside during and since the prehistoric period.

Details

The monument includes three small prehistoric house platforms situated on the upper south-east slope of Roughtor on north-west Bodmin Moor. The house platforms are spaced 9m-11m apart as a triangular group. Each is visible as a small sub-circular, cleared and levelled internal area defined by a slight wall of rubble comprising stone cleared to the edges of the interior and roughly heaped onto the surrounding natural surface stone and boulders of the densely scree-strewn slope. The western house platform of the group has an internal area measuring 2.3m east-west by 2m north-south, with a wall up to 1m wide and 0.5m high. Situated 9m to the north-east, the group's northern house platform measures 2.7m east-west by 2.2m north-south internally; its wall is 1.2m wide and 0.4m high. The eastern house platform of the group is situated a further 12m to the south-east and measures 2m east-west by 1.75m north-south, with a rubble wall up to 1m wide and 0.5m high. These house platforms form a closely-spaced cluster at the north-east of a more dispersed group, including at least ten similar house platforms, which extends beyond this monument to the south-west for up to 125m along the slope. The walls of a broadly contemporary, Neolithic hilltop enclosure, containing numerous house platforms, are located 25m north-west of this monument on the summit of Roughtor, while extensive Bronze Age and medieval settlement sites and field systems are situated on the lower slopes of Roughtor, from 140m to the south.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number:
15226
Legacy System:
RSM

Sources

Other
consulted 1992, Carter, A./CAU/RCHME, 1:2500 AP transcriptions and field trace for SX 1480,
to be PRN 3319 (part); consulted 1992, Rose, P. G. & R. R., Cornwall SMR Field Survey Record Card for Roughtor South 103, (1985)
to be PRN 3319 (part); consulted 1992, Rose, P.G. & R.R., Cornwall SMR Field Survey Record Card for Roughtor South 102, (1985)

Legal

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

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