Ancient Monuments

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A double stone hut circle and enclosure 280m south of Deadlake Foot

A Scheduled Monument in Peter Tavy, Devon

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Latitude: 50.6356 / 50°38'8"N

Longitude: -4.0361 / 4°2'9"W

OS Eastings: 256107.763452

OS Northings: 83742.882467

OS Grid: SX561837

Mapcode National: GBR Q1.H730

Mapcode Global: FRA 27FD.9DN

Entry Name: A double stone hut circle and enclosure 280m south of Deadlake Foot

Scheduled Date: 12 August 1993

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011569

English Heritage Legacy ID: 20395

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Peter Tavy

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Widecombe-in-the-Moor St Pancras

Church of England Diocese: Exeter


This monument includes a double stone hut circle attached to the eastern side
of an enclosure situated on the edge of the River Tavy flood plain at the foot
of the Watern Oke hillslope. The hut is terraced into the hillside and is
composed of stone and earth banks surrounding two internal areas or rooms. The
interior of the northern room measures 4m in diameter and the wall stands 1.3m
wide and 0.6m high. The southern room measures 5m long by 4m wide and is
defined by a wall, 0.9m wide and 0.3m high.
The enclosure measures 51m from north to south by 43m east to west and is
defined on the south by a rubble boundary bank measuring 1.4m wide and
standing up to 0.3m high. On the west a 3m wide and 0.7m high lynchet denotes
the edge of the enclosure. On the north, a scarp at the foot of the hillslope
denotes the edge. The eastern length of the boundary bank survives as a
buried feature. A 4m length of boundary bank leading from the western corner
of the enclosure measures 2m wide and 0.7m high and has been truncated by the
River Tavy.
The floodplain to the south-east of the monument may contain further
archaeological features, but this area is not included within the scheduling
because a considerable peat accumulation means that no earthworks or other
structures have been identified.

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 stone hut circle and enclosure 280m south of Deadlake Foot survive
comparatively well and lie in close proximity to the unenclosed stone hut
circle settlement at Watern Oke, which is one of the largest on Dartmoor.
Archaeological structures, features and deposits survive and will provide a
valuable insight into the economy of the site's inhabitants and the landscape
in which they lived.

Source: Historic England


Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1987)
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard,

Source: Historic England

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