Round cairn and shelter 140m north west of Yes Tor summit


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1010595

Date first listed: 27-Feb-1963

Date of most recent amendment: 17-Jan-1995


Ordnance survey map of Round cairn and shelter 140m north west of Yes Tor summit
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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 57955 90199


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. 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.

Despite partial early excavation, the round cairn 140m north west of Yes Tor survives comparatively well and contains archaeological and environmental information relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was erected. This cairn is situated near to the top of Dartmoor's second highest peak. In addition to the cairn, the monument includes a small shelter.


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


This monument includes a round cairn and a small shelter situated on a natural shelf immediately below the summit of Yes Tor which overlooks much of North Devon. The cairn mound measures 29m in diameter and stands up to 2m high. This cairn has been the subject of a partial excavation which has left two distinctive features. The first is a large hollow in the centre of the mound, which measures 7m long, 6m wide and 1.5m deep, and in which many large rocks are exposed. The second is a 14m long, 3m wide and 0.7m deep trench which leads to the central hollow from the northern edge of the cairn. Many of the stones forming banks around these hollows probably represent material upcast during the course of the undocumented antiquarian exploration. A small shelter of unknown date lies 4m south of the cairn. The interior of this structure is oval in shape, measures 2m long by 1.5m wide and is surrounded by a 1.1m wide and 0.4m high rubble wall. A gap in the north eastern wall probably represents a doorway.

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: 24161

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Butler, J, 'Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities - The North' in Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, , Vol. 2, (1990), 214
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX59SE9, (1987)
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard,

End of official listing