Two hut circles and associated field systems and enclosure at Mousehill Brake


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


Ordnance survey map of Two hut circles and associated field systems and enclosure at Mousehill Brake
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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This copy shows the entry on 19-Nov-2019 at 02:02:11.


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

South Hams (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SX 69907 37771

Reasons for Designation

Stone hut circles and hut circle settlements were the dwelling places of prehistoric farmers. Most date from the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). The stone- based round-houses consist of low walls or banks enclosing a circular floor area; the remains of the turf, thatch or heather roofs 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 or stone. Frequently traces of their associated field systems may be found immediately around them. These may be indicated by areas of clearance cairns and/or the remains of field walls and other enclosures. The longevity of use of hut circle settlements and their relationship with other monument types provides 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 two hut circles, field system and enclosure at Mousehill Brake survive well and will retain stratified and environmental information relating to their construction and use.


This monument includes two hut circles, parts of field systems of medieval and earlier dates, an enclosure, and a post-medieval field clearance cairn. It is located on a steeply sloping, south facing valley side overlooking the sea at Soar Mill Cove. A long straight field boundary runs at an angle up the valley side from the stream to Hazel Tor, measuring 3m wide and up to 2m high with vertical stone slabs set in it edge to edge, forming a fence. The earthwork enclosure abuts the lower side of this boundary and is `D'-shaped, measuring 50m long and 40m wide across the visible earthworks. Its banks are from 9m to 15m wide, rising 0.3m from the interior and falling up to 3.5m to a shallow outer ditch with a slight counterscarp bank. Within the enclosure is a hut platform, 11m across and 1m high. Two medieval lynchets with scarps up to 2m high, cut across the enclosure and continue for 160m to the north west and 40m to the south east, where a later field clearance cairn lies at its end. Some 40m west of the enclosure, a hut circle 12m in total diameter with walls 2m wide and 0.8m high lies on a low platform just south of the lynchets, while a second hut circle with similar dimensions sits on a low platform 100m east of the enclosure. A ruined 19th century shippon which abuts the long straight field boundary at its south east end is not included in the scheduling. The modern fence posts are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included.

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:
Legacy System:


MPP fieldwork by R Waterhouse, Waterhouse, R, (2000)
MPP fieldwork by R Waterhouse, Waterhouse, R, (2000)


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 Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

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