Lanacombe 2: a stone setting and cairn on the east side of Lanacombe


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1014274

Date first listed: 28-Mar-1996


Ordnance survey map of Lanacombe 2: a stone setting and cairn on the east side of Lanacombe
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Somerset

District: West Somerset (District Authority)

Parish: Exmoor

National Park: EXMOOR

National Grid Reference: SS 78432 42873


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 settings consist of a group of standing stones set out in an irregular or random pattern. There are a number of such sites on Exmoor where they appear to be a regional variation of the more common stone alignments. Stone settings 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 settings 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. Due to their rarity and longevity as a monument type all surviving examples are considered to be of national importance.

Round cairns are prehistoric funerary monuments dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as stone mounds covering single or multiple burials. These burials may be placed within the mound in stone-lined compartments called cists. In some cases the cairn was surrounded by a ditch. Often occupying prominent locations, cairns are a major visual element in the modern landscape. They are a relatively common feature of the uplands and are the stone equivalent of the earthen round barrows of the lowlands. 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. Lanacombe 2: a stone setting and cairn on the east side of Lanacombe survives well with little evidence of disturbance and will retain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to the development and use of the monument. Its importance is enhanced by being part of a linear group of five similar sites.


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


The monument includes four standing stones, a recumbent stone, a cairn and the archaeologically sensitive area around and between the features. The site is located on the south east facing slope of Lanacombe. The stones are set out with the cairn defining an irregular triangular area which extends over 0.13ha. The standing stones are between 300mm and 450mm high, 200mm to 530mm wide and 100mm to 150mm thick. Three of the stones have erosion hollows around them that are up to 350mm deep. A further erosion hollow may mark the position of a former standing stone and is 2m across and 200mm deep. The cairn, on the north west margin of the site, is 3m in diameter and 300mm high at its highest point.

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: 25202

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Quinnell, N V, Dunn, C J, Lithic Monuments within the Exmoor National Park: A New Survey, (1992), 44
McDonnell, R R J, (1993)
Title: Gray`s Ordnance Survey 6" Map sheet 33 SW Source Date: 1905 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

End of official listing