Enclosed stone hut circle settlement 700m south of Leeden Tor

Overview

Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
1008667
Date first listed:
06-Jan-1972
Date of most recent amendment:
08-Aug-1994

Map

Ordnance survey map of Enclosed stone hut circle settlement 700m south of Leeden Tor
© 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.

County:
Devon
District:
West Devon (District Authority)
Parish:
Walkhampton
National Park:
DARTMOOR
National Grid Reference:
SX 56180 71004

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 and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

The stone hut circle settlements on the southern slopes of Leeden Tor survive comparatively well and form part of a rich and diverse archaeological resource. Archaeological structures, features and deposits, in addition to environmental remains, will survive intact and provide an insight into settlement and agricultural practice on the western side of the moor.

Details

This monument includes an enclosed stone hut circle settlement situated on the south facing slope of Leeden Tor overlooking the valleys of the Rivers Walkham and Meavy. Six stone hut circles can be identified within the settlement. All the huts are circular in plan and measure between 4.2m and 7m in diameter. The walls of the huts are composed of stone and earth and measure between 0.4m and 0.8m high. Five of the huts are built across the northern line of the enclosure boundary and one lies in the centre. Four huts have visible doorways. The enclosure wall defines an oval internal area measuring 63m east to west by 55m north to south. The wall survives as a stony bank 0.9m wide and 0.2m high. Attached to the southern length of wall is a circular depression 9.8m in diameter and 1.3m deep which has been interpreted as a water catchment basin or reservoir, which may be contemporary with the settlement.

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:
22264
Legacy System:
RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Gerrard, S, Military mortar emplacements on Dartmoor?, (1992)
Other
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX57SE3,
Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1987)
National Archaeological Record, SX57SE43,

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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