Five stone hut circles 500m south east of Yealm Steps forming part of a large stone hut circle settlement


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1015430

Date first listed: 26-Mar-1992

Date of most recent amendment: 08-Apr-1997


Ordnance survey map of Five stone hut circles 500m south east of Yealm Steps forming part of a large stone hut circle settlement
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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 62190 63449


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 five stone hut circles 500m south east of Yealm Steps form part of a large stone hut circle settlement, survive comparatively well and contain 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. The multi-phase character of the settlement will provide valuable information concerning the changing domestic and agricultural requirements of an upland Bronze Age society.


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


This monument includes a cluster of five stone hut circles situated on the eastern edge of a large stone hut circle settlement, lying on a south-facing slope overlooking the valley of the River Yealm. Four of the stone hut circles survive as banks of stone and earth surrounding a circular internal area. The internal diameters of these huts varies between 4m and 4.7m with the average being 4.2m. The height of the surrounding wall varies between 0.3m and 0.5m with the average being 0.4m. The fifth hut survives as a 5.8m diameter circular stony area standing up to 0.4m high. One hut has a south facing doorway and an annex.

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: 24101

Legacy System: RSM


Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW251,
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW260,
Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1988)
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard,

End of official listing