Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Two stone hut circles and part of a coaxial field system at Frenchbeer Rock

A Scheduled Monument in Chagford, Devon

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Latitude: 50.6534 / 50°39'12"N

Longitude: -3.8805 / 3°52'49"W

OS Eastings: 267162.85438

OS Northings: 85438.08152

OS Grid: SX671854

Mapcode National: GBR Q8.MBXL

Mapcode Global: FRA 27RB.XQM

Entry Name: Two stone hut circles and part of a coaxial field system at Frenchbeer Rock

Scheduled Date: 8 December 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1017483

English Heritage Legacy ID: 28662

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Chagford

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Chagford St Michael

Church of England Diocese: Exeter


The monument includes two stone hut circles and part of a coaxial field system
situated on a gentle spur overlooking the valley of the South Teign River.
The stone hut circles survive as walls surrounding circular internal areas
and both have well defined south facing doorways. The internal diameter of
the southern hut measures 8.5m and is defined by a 3.4m wide double faced
orthostatic wall standing up to 1.8m high. The northern hut's interior
measures 6.4m in diameter and is defined by a 2m wide and 1.2m high
orthostatic wall.
The coaxial field system includes at least four distinctive lengths of
rubble walling forming part of the Kestor parallel reave system. The north
western and south eastern lengths of walling are parallel reaves. The
remaining two are cross reaves and they lead off from the south eastern length
of parallel reave.

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 two stone hut circles and part of a coaxial field system at Frenchbeer
Rock survive well and contain archaeological and environmental information
relating to the character and development of this area in prehistoric times.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, (1991)

Source: Historic England

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