This browser is not fully supported by Historic England. Please update your browser to the latest version so that you get the best from our website.

Sixty stone hut circles forming part of an unenclosed settlement at Watern Oke

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Sixty stone hut circles forming part of an unenclosed settlement at Watern Oke

List entry Number: 1011559

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Devon

District: West Devon

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Dartmoor Forest

National Park: DARTMOOR

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 19-Jan-1962

Date of most recent amendment: 24-Aug-1993

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 20354

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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. 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 unenclosed stone hut circle settlement at Watern Oke is one of the largest on Dartmoor and, despite partial excavation, important and informative archaeological structures, features and deposits still survive. Such evidence will provide a valuable insight into the economy of the site's inhabitants and the landscape in which they lived.

History

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

Details



This monument includes sixty stone hut circles, three cooking hearths and a post-medieval storage building situated immediately next to an area of clitter on a south facing slope overlooking the valley of the River Tavy and forming part of the large unenclosed stone hut circle settlement at Watern Oke. Of the sixty hut circles, fifty-one are circular in plan and the internal diameters of these huts vary from 1.5m to 6.6m. Nine huts are oval in plan, and these range between 2.4m to 6.4m long and 1.8m to 4.3m wide and stand between 0.5m and 1.1m high. The average height of all the walls is 0.79m. Thirty-four of the huts contain hearths, five have porches, two have internal partition walls, one has a bench and another an annexe. Twenty-nine of the hut circles are attached to boundary walls. The three cooking hearths consist of small stone-lined pits containing burnt stone and charcoal. The small storage building consists of a rectangular single roomed structure with corbelled walls and a stone lintel roof. The interior of the structure measures 1.2m long by 0.9m wide and the wall stands up to 1.3m high. This structure is not large enough to have provided shelter and it is therefore more likely to be a storage building or cache.

This monument forms the greater part of one of the largest unenclosed stone hut circle settlements on Dartmoor.

During June and July 1905 fifty-six of the stone hut circles were partially excavated by the Dartmoor Exploration Committee. Considerable quantities of charcoal were found together with cooking stones, pottery and flint artefacts. Of particular interest was the recovery of a Romano-British glass bead which suggests more than one period of occupation. Further stone hut circles probably survive in the area north of the monument, but these are not included in the scheduling because they are buried below peat and cannot therefore be identified.

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.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 110
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 103
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 107
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 107
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 106-107
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 103
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 109
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 106
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 107-108
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 107
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 111
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 105
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 102-103
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 105-106
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 110
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 104-105
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 104
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906)
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906), 108
Anderson, I K, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in Hut Circle Settlement at Watern Oke, , Vol. 38, (1906)
Other
Attrill, N.J., SX58SE9 - Settlement at Watern Oke with amendments, (1979)
Gerrard, S., Unenclosed stone hut circle settlement at Watern Oke - SM 20354, (1991)
Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1987)
Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1987)
Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1987)
Title: Ordnance Survey Map sheet SX 58 SE Source Date: 1988 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

National Grid Reference: SX 56453 83496

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1011559 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 19-Nov-2017 at 07:54:00.

End of official listing