Wilmersham Common stone row 320m south east of the confluence of Embercombe and Chetsford waters

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1014257

Date first listed: 28-Mar-1996

Map

Ordnance survey map of Wilmersham Common stone row 320m south east of the confluence of Embercombe and Chetsford waters
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Location

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

County: Somerset

District: West Somerset (District Authority)

Parish: Luccombe

National Park: EXMOOR

National Grid Reference: SS 85670 41976

Summary

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

Reasons for Designation

Exmoor is the most easterly of the three main upland areas in the south western peninsula of England. In contrast to the other two areas, Dartmoor and Bodmin Moor, there has been no history of antiquarian research and little excavation of its monuments. However, survey work has confirmed a comparable richness of archaeological remains with evidence of human exploitation and occupation from the Mesolithic period to the present day. The well-preserved and often visible relationships between settlement sites, major land boundaries, trackways and ceremonial and funerary monuments give insight into successive changes in the pattern of land-use through time. Stone alignments or stone rows consist of upright stones set in a single line, or in two or more parallel lines, up to several hundred metres in length. They are often sited close to prehistoric burial monuments, such as small cairns and cists, and to ritual monuments, such as stone circles, and are therefore considered to have had an important ceremonial function. Stone alignments were being constructed and used from the Late Neolithic period to the Middle Bronze Age (c.2500-1000 BC) and provide rare evidence of ceremonial and ritual practices during these periods. The recorded examples on Exmoor form an important subgroup of the total population and are considered to be of national importance.

The Wilmersham Common stone row is unusual on Exmoor where stone rows tend to have smaller, more discrete, arrangements. The absence of gaps and recumbent stones in the alignment suggest that it is largely intact. The monument will retain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to the use and development of the site.

History

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

Details

The monument includes a stone row of 50 standing stones and the archaeologically sensitive area between and around them. The site is located on the west facing slopes of Honeycombe Hill 320m south east of the confluence of Embercombe and Chetsford waters. The stone row is 68m long and 3m wide at its widest point. It is orientated roughly north east to south west. The monument changes its orientation to a more northerly direction 56m from the south western end before continuing for a further 12m. The longest section comprises an irregular, single row of stones of which none are higher than 100mm. This part of the row is marked by a terminal stone 600mm high at the south western end and by a 500mm high stone at the north eastern end where the orientation changes. From this point the monument comprises an irregular double or triple row which extends for 12m. The stones in this section are no higher than 200mm and at the north eastern end there is a terminal stone 400mm high.

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: 25213

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Quinnell, N V, Dunn, C J, Lithic Monuments within the Exmoor National Park: A New Survey, (1992), 55
Other
McDonnell, R R J, (1993)

End of official listing