Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Unenclosed stone hut circle settlement 770m NNW of Little Links Tor

A Scheduled Monument in Sourton, Devon

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Latitude: 50.6711 / 50°40'15"N

Longitude: -4.0599 / 4°3'35"W

OS Eastings: 254537.40748

OS Northings: 87736.06926

OS Grid: SX545877

Mapcode National: GBR Q0.710J

Mapcode Global: FRA 27D9.D53

Entry Name: Unenclosed stone hut circle settlement 770m NNW of Little Links Tor

Scheduled Date: 20 April 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1007645

English Heritage Legacy ID: 22330

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Sourton

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon


This monument includes a group of twelve stone hut circles situated on a
gentle west-facing slope overlooking the valley of the River Lyd. The hut
circles are composed of circular stone and earth banks surrounding an internal
area. The internal diameters of the huts varies between 3m and 8m with the
average being 4.75m. The height of the surrounding wall varies between 0.4m
and 0.7m with the average being 0.5m.

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.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

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 unenclosed stone hut circle settlement 770m NNW of Little Links Tor
survives well and is the highest known example within a discrete group of at
least four settlements which occupy the lower slopes of the hills overlooking
the valley of the River Lyd. Analysis of the hut diameters has suggested that
at least four of the huts were used as ancillary buildings, one as a central
meeting place and the others as dwellings. The settlement lies in close
proximity to rich tin deposits, and it has been suggested that this may have
played an important role in its location. This is a rare example of a stone
hut circle settlement with no associated visible field system or enclosures.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Amhof, G, 'Dartmoor Magazine' in Hut Circles In The Upper Lyd Valley, , Vol. 30, (1993), 22-23
Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1987)
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard,

Source: Historic England

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