Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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A stone hut circle on Longash Common lying 980m ESE of Merrivale Bridge

A Scheduled Monument in Whitchurch, Devon

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Latitude: 50.5545 / 50°33'16"N

Longitude: -4.0353 / 4°2'6"W

OS Eastings: 255920.253012

OS Northings: 74729.498358

OS Grid: SX559747

Mapcode National: GBR Q1.NFBC

Mapcode Global: FRA 27FL.PRG

Entry Name: A stone hut circle on Longash Common lying 980m ESE of Merrivale Bridge

Scheduled Date: 27 November 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013433

English Heritage Legacy ID: 24197

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Whitchurch

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon


This monument includes an isolated stone hut circle situated on a gentle south
west facing slope overlooking the valley of an unnamed tributary of the River
Walkham. The building is composed of a stone and earth wall surrounding a
circular internal area. The interior of the building measures 7m in diameter
and the surrounding 1.4m wide wall stands up to 1m high. The doorway survives
as a 0.65m wide, SSE facing gap in the hut wall and is lined on both sides by
granite slabs.

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 on Longash Common lying 980m ESE of Merrivale Bridge
survives well and together with a rich array of features to the west forms
part of a particularly important archaeological landscape in which the three
major periods of human activity on the Moor are represented.

Source: Historic England


Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX57SE138, (1986)
Gibson, A, Single Monument Class Description - Stone Hut Circles, (1987)
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard, (1994)

Source: Historic England

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