Coaxial fields and prehistoric settlements 180m north and 350m north west of Hartland Tor


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1021336

Date first listed: 03-Mar-1977

Date of most recent amendment: 22-Jun-2004


Ordnance survey map of Coaxial fields and prehistoric settlements 180m north and 350m north west of Hartland Tor
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Devon

District: West Devon (District Authority)

Parish: Dartmoor Forest

National Park: DARTMOOR

National Grid Reference: SX 63891 80102, SX 64240 80156


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. Elaborate complexes of fields and field boundaries are some of the major features of the Dartmoor landscape. The reaves are part of an extensive system of prehistoric land division introduced during the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They consist of simple linear stone banks used to mark out discrete territories, some of which are tens of kilometres in extent. The systems are defined by parallel, contour and watershed reaves, dividing the lower land from the grazing zones of the higher moor and defining the watersheds of adjacent river systems. Occupation sites and funerary or ceremonial monuments are often incorporated in, or associated with, reave complexes. Their longevity and their relationship with other monument types provide important information on the diversity of social organisation, land divisions and farming practices amongst prehistoric communities. They show considerable longevity as a monument type, sometimes surviving as fossilised examples in medieval field plans. They are an important element in the existing landscape and, as such, a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

The coaxial fields and prehistoric settlements 180m north and 350m north west of Hartland Tor survive well and will contain archaeological and environmental information relating to the use of this area during the prehistoric period. These fields form part of the Stannon block system which is the most extensive and best preserved of the block systems on Dartmoor.


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


The monument includes a group of coaxial fields and associated prehistoric settlements extending from the western side of the East Dart River over the western and eastern slopes of Hartland Tor. The coaxial fields survive as a group of fields arranged on a single east-west prevailing axis, subdivided by transverse boundaries. The boundaries survive as stony banks measuring up to 2m wide and 0.4m high. Within the area defined by the fields there are two settlements. The western settlement straddles the East Dart River and survives as a sub rectangular enclosure denoted by a rubble bank measuring up to 3m wide and standing up to 0.5m high. The interior of the enclosure measures 150m east-west by 120m north-south and contains at least three stone hut circles. This enclosure forms the western edge of the coaxial fields which contain the second settlement. This settlement includes at least four stone hut circles and five small enclosures. Within the coaxial fields forming the eastern side of the monument are traces of ridge and furrow which is aligned east-west on an east facing slope.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 34495

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, (1991), 40
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, (1991), 42
SX 68 SW 66, NMR, English Heritage, NMR Monument Report, (2003)
SX 68 SW 81, NMR, English Heritage, NMR Monument Report, (2003)

End of official listing