Ancient Monuments

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Prehistoric hut circle and field system 440m south west of Treswallock Cottage

A Scheduled Monument in St. Breward, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.5715 / 50°34'17"N

Longitude: -4.6826 / 4°40'57"W

OS Eastings: 210139.040105

OS Northings: 78074.764052

OS Grid: SX101780

Mapcode National: GBR N4.F90W

Mapcode Global: FRA 172K.9K6

Entry Name: Prehistoric hut circle and field system 440m south west of Treswallock Cottage

Scheduled Date: 10 October 2000

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019171

English Heritage Legacy ID: 15547

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: St. Breward

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: St Breward

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes a prehistoric hut circle with adjacent field system
remains on a westerly slope on the modern Treswallock Farm near the western
edge of Bodmin Moor. The monument also includes that length of a medieval and
post-medieval hedgebank which truncates the northern surviving extent of the
prehistoric field system.
The hut circle survives with an ovoid interior, levelled into the slope and
measuring 6.7m north-south by 5.9m east-west. The interior is defined by a
turf covered rubble bank, 2.2m-2.8m wide and rising to a maximum 0.6m high
beside the east side of the levelled interior, although only 0.1m high along
the bank's eastern outer face. The exposed rubble along the bank's north
western curve shows a roughly coursed inner and outer facing, indicating a
former width of 1.4m for the bank at that level. Two short breaks in the bank
on the WNW and south west sides may indicate an original entrance or may be
attributable to later damage.
A prehistoric boundary extends for 11.5m north from the northern edge of the
hut circle bank. It is visible as a turf covered rubble bank, generally 2.5m
wide, rising to 0.6m high along its downslope (western) side but only 0.3m
high along its upslope (eastern) side: this height difference reflects the
boundary's blocking of downslope soil movement, an effect called lynchetting
and enhanced by former cultivation of the adjacent ground. The boundary's
northern end is abruptly truncated 0.9m from a medieval and later hedgebank
which passes east-west across its line. Nearby to the east, that hedgebank
itself is overlain and truncated by a substantial modern rubble faced
hedgebank whose course runs north-south on an alignment 2.3m east of the
prehistoric boundary.
A small rectangular prehistoric field encloses the west side of the hut
circle, its surviving extent defined on the west and north by a low rubble
bank. Subsequent attempts to open up the modern pasture have created several
breaks across the bank but between those breaks it remains visible, generally
1.3m-1.7m wide and up to 0.5m high, following a northerly course passing 2m
west of the hut circle and then turns east towards the boundary running north
from the hut circle. On the south side, a modern hedgebank truncates the plot
and veers north east past the southern edge of the hut circle wall.
All modern post and wire fences and the structure of the modern timber stile
over the southern hedgebank are excluded from the scheduling, although the
ground beneath them is included.

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

Bodmin Moor, the largest of the Cornish granite uplands, has long been
recognised to have exceptional preservation of archaeological remains. The
Moor has been the subject of detailed archaeological survey and is one of the
best recorded upland landscapes in England. The extensive relict landscapes of
prehistoric, medieval and post-medieval date provide direct evidence for human
exploitation of the Moor from the earliest prehistoric period onwards. The
well-preserved and often visible relationship between settlement sites, field
systems, ceremonial and funerary monuments as well as later industrial remains
provides significant insights into successive changes in the pattern of land
use through time. Stone hut circles were the dwelling places of prehistoric
farmers on the Moor, mostly dating from the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). The
stone-based round houses survive as low walls or banks enclosing a circular
floor area; remains of a turf or thatch roof are not preserved. The huts occur
singly or in small or large groups and may occur in the open or be enclosed by
a bank of earth and stone. Although they are common on the Moor, their
longevity of use and their relationship with other monument types provides
important information on the diversity of social organisation and farming
practices among prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative
of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are
considered worthy of protection.

The hut circle 440m south west of Treswallock Cottage survives well, showing
only limited evidence for later disturbance and none at all affecting the hut
circle interior. Although truncated by later boundaries and land use, the
remains of the adjacent prehistoric field system provide valuable evidence for
the contemporary land use accompanying this settlement site. This hut circle
and its remnant field system form a rare survival in long enclosed modern
pasture, where we have relatively few insights into the nature of prehistoric
activity due to its location well beyond the main foci of surviving
prehistoric remains on the higher downs of Bodmin Moor.

Source: Historic England


CAU, Cornwall SMR entry: PRN 3111, (1989)
Title: 1:10000 Ordnance Survey Map; SX 17 NW
Source Date: 1983

Source: Historic England

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