Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Swap Hill standing stone 200m south east of the Long Combe sheep pen

A Scheduled Monument in Exmoor, Somerset

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Latitude: 51.1708 / 51°10'14"N

Longitude: -3.7105 / 3°42'37"W

OS Eastings: 280512.90417

OS Northings: 142669.415842

OS Grid: SS805426

Mapcode National: GBR L6.6HTY

Mapcode Global: VH5K0.MTSW

Entry Name: Swap Hill standing stone 200m south east of the Long Combe sheep pen

Scheduled Date: 27 March 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1014272

English Heritage Legacy ID: 25230

County: Somerset

Civil Parish: Exmoor

Traditional County: Somerset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Somerset


The monument includes a standing stone, a split fragment from the standing
stone and the archaeologically sensitive area around those features. It is
located on the gentle west facing slope of the western spur of Swap Hill 200m
south east of the Long Combe sheep pen. The stone is a slab orientated north
west to south east and is 230mm high, 330mm long and 96mm wide.

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

Exmoor is the most easterly of the three main upland areas in the south
western peninsula of England. In contrast to the other two areas, Dartmoor and
Bodmin Moor, there has been no history of antiquarian research and little
excavation of its monuments. However, survey work has confirmed a comparable
richness of archaeological remains with evidence of human exploitation and
occupation from the Mesolithic period to the present day. The well-preserved
and often visible relationships between settlement sites, major land
boundaries, trackways and ceremonial and funerary monuments give insight into
successive changes in the pattern of land-use through time.
Standing stones are prehistoric ritual or ceremonial monuments, with dates
ranging from the Late Neolithic to the end of the Bronze Age for the few
excavated examples. They comprise single or paired upright orthostatic slabs,
ranging from under 1m to over 6m high where still erect. They are often
conspicuously sited and close to prehistoric burial monuments such as small
cairns and cists. Standing stones may have functioned as markers for
routeways, territories, graves or meeting points, but their accompanying
features show they also bore a ritual function and that they form one of
several ritual monument classes of their period. Although standing stones are
widely distributed throughout England, the recorded examples on Exmoor form an
important subgroup of the total population and are considered to be of
national importance.

Although the Swap Hill standing stone has been split it survives in its
original position and will retain archaeological and environmental evidence
relating to the construction and use of the monument. Its importance is
increased by the proximity of two other similar sites to the south east.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
McDonnell, R R J, Recommendations for the Management of Archaeological Sites in, (1985), 54
McDonnell R R J, SMR 33120, (1982)

Source: Historic England

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