Four prehistoric house platforms on south-east Roughtor, 938m NNW of Fernacre Farm


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


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

Cornwall (Unitary Authority)
St. Breward
National Grid Reference:
SX 14689 80623

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.

These 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.


The monument includes four small prehistoric house platforms situated on the upper south-east slope of Roughtor on north-west Bodmin Moor. The house platforms are spaced 2m-8m apart as a linear group on a NNE-SSW axis along the slope. Each is visible as a small sub-circular, cleared internal area, levelled into the slope and defined by a slight wall of rubble comprising stone cleared to the edges of the interior, roughly heaped about the periphery and incorporating surrounding natural boulders of this densely scree-strewn slope. The NNE house platform of the group has an internal area measuring 5.9m east-west by 5.1m north-south, with a wall up to 1.4m wide and 0.35m high. Situated 7.5m to the south-west, the next house platform in the group measures 4.5m east-west by 5.3m north-south internally, its 1.5m wide and 0.25m high wall incorporating a scatter of boulders on its north side. A gap of 2.5m to the south separates this from the group's next house platform which measures 4.4m east-west by 3.6m north-south, with a rubble wall up to 1.7m wide and 0.25m high, incorporating a large natural boulder on its west side. The SSW house platform measures 7.2m east-west by 7m north-south internally, with a rubble wall up to 1.4m wide and 0.4m high. These house platforms form a closely-spaced cluster near the centre of a more dispersed group including at least ten similar house platforms, which extends beyond this monument for 50m to the west and 73m to the north-east. The walls of a broadly contemporary, Neolithic hilltop enclosure, containing numerous house platforms, are located 90m north of this monument on the summit plateau of Roughtor, while extensive Bronze Age and medieval settlement sites and field systems are situated on the lower slopes of Roughtor, 55m 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.


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


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 100, (1985)
to be PRN 3319 (part); consulted 1992, Rose, P.G. & R.R., Cornwall SMR Field Survey Record Card for Roughtor South 101, (1985)
to be PRN 3319 (part); consulted 1992, Rose, P.G. & R.R., Cornwall SMR Field Survey Record Card for Roughtor South 111, (1985)
to be PRN 3319 (part); consulted 1992, Rose, P.G. & R.R., Cornwall SMR Field Survey Record Card for Roughtor South 99, (1985)


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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