Platform cairn 30m north west of Fordsland Ledge


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010594

Date first listed: 19-Jan-1962

Date of most recent amendment: 17-Jan-1995


Ordnance survey map of Platform cairn 30m north west of Fordsland Ledge
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Devon

District: West Devon (District Authority)

Parish: Okehampton Hamlets

National Park: DARTMOOR

National Grid Reference: SX 57585 88899


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

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. Platform cairns are funerary monuments covering single or multiple burials and dating to the Early Bronze Age (c.2000-1600 BC). They were constructed as low flat-topped mounds of stone rubble up to 40m in external diameter. Some examples have other features, including peripheral banks and internal mounds, constructed on this platform. A kerb of edge-set stones sometimes bounds the edges of the platform, bank or mound, or all three. Platform cairns occur as isolated monuments, in small groups, or in cairn cemeteries. In the latter instances they are normally found alongside cairns of other types. Although no precise figure is available, current evidence indicates that there are under 250 known examples of this monument class nationally. As a rare monument type exhibiting considerable variation in form, a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of preservation.

Despite partial early excavation, the platform cairn 30m north west of Fordsland Ledge survives comparatively well and contains archaeological and environmental information relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was erected.


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


This monument includes a platform cairn situated near to a rock outcrop known as Fordsland Ledge, which lies on the south west spur of High Willhays overlooking the valley of the West Okement River. The cairn mound measures 13.9m in diameter and stands up to 1.1m high. A rectangular pit lined roughly with large stones is visible within the centre of the mound and may represent the site of a cist or other structure revealed by early excavation. A number of stones protruding from the mound may have been exposed during the exploration of the cairn. A small number of edge set stones define the northern edge of the mound and these probably represent a kerb which survives elsewhere around the periphery as a buried feature.

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: 24160

Legacy System: RSM


Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX58NE2, (1982)
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard,
National Archaeological Record, SX58NE2,

End of official listing