Enclosure and stone hut circles 600m ESE of Penn Beacon, forming part of a stone hut circle settlement

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1015428

Date first listed: 12-Jan-1961

Date of most recent amendment: 08-Apr-1997

Map

Ordnance survey map of Enclosure and stone hut circles 600m ESE of Penn Beacon, forming part of a stone hut circle settlement
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

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

County: Devon

District: South Hams (District Authority)

Parish: Cornwood

National Park: DARTMOOR

National Grid Reference: SX 60496 62652

Summary

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 stone hut circle settlement 600m ESE of Penn Beacon survives comparatively well and contains archaeological remains and environmental evidence relating to the monument, the economy of its inhabitants and the landscape in which they lived. As such, it provides a valuable insight into the nature of Bronze Age occupation on the south side of the moor.

History

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

Details

This monument includes 11 stone hut circles and a sub-circular enclosure situated on a south east facing slope overlooking the valley of the Ford Brook. The interior of the enclosure measures 60m long by 55m wide and is defined by a double faced 3m wide and 0.5m high rubble wall. An entrance survives as a gap in the surrounding wall and faces north east. Two stone hut circles are built across the northern line of the enclosure boundary wall. The eastern hut survives as a 5m diameter and 0.4m deep circular hollow terraced into the hillslope. The western hut includes a faced stone and earth wall 2m wide and 0.6m high surrounding the interior which measures 6.3m in diameter. The remaining huts lie outside the enclosure. One hut lies north of the enclosure and survives as a bank of stone and earth 1m wide and 0.8m high surrounding a 5m diameter circular internal area. The other eight huts are clustered together in the area south west of the enclosure and their internal diameters vary between 4m and 7.3m with the average being 5.61m. The height of the surrounding walls varies between 0.4m and 1.2m with the average being 0.81m. Six of the huts have visible doorways. Stone hut circles and enclosures lying to the north west, south west and south east are the subject of seperate schedulings.

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: 24092

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Other
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW100,
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW239,
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW264,
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW265,
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW266,
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW267,
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW274,
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW275,
Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1988)
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard,

End of official listing