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Stone alignment, five cairns, two stone hut circles and a length of reave 600m north east of Horseyeatt

A Scheduled Monument in Walkhampton, Devon

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Latitude: 50.5178 / 50°31'4"N

Longitude: -4.0471 / 4°2'49"W

OS Eastings: 254966.076503

OS Northings: 70672.820968

OS Grid: SX549706

Mapcode National: GBR Q0.JXYT

Mapcode Global: FRA 27DP.K44

Entry Name: Stone alignment, five cairns, two stone hut circles and a length of reave 600m north east of Horseyeatt

Scheduled Date: 3 July 1964

Last Amended: 9 March 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019566

English Heritage Legacy ID: 28782

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Walkhampton

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon


The monument, which falls into four separate areas of protection, includes a
stone alignment, five cairns, two stone hut circles and a length of reave on a
moderately steep west facing slope overlooking the valley of the River Tamar.
The stone alignment includes a line of at least 47 upright stones leading
downslope for 132m from a round cairn. The lower end of the alignment is
denoted by a large upright stone standing 1.2m high. Midway along the
alignment there is an edge set stone positioned next to the row. The cairn at
the upper end of the alignment measures 8.8m in diameter and stands up to 0.5m
high. Many of the stones protruding through the turf in this cairn are edge
set, suggesting the existence of internal structures. Similar structures
survive within the body of a second cairn lying a short distance to the north
east. This cairn measures 5.5m in diameter by 0.3m high and a small hollow in
its centre suggests partial early excavation or robbing. Three more cairns
stand in a cluster to the south of the first two. These are between 4.8m and
7.8m in diameter and stand between 0.3m and 0.8m high. All three mounds have
seen partial early investigation and one has been cut by a later field ditch.
A length of reave leading across the south western end of the stone alignment
measures 240m long, 1.6m wide and up 0.6m high and is clearly more recent than
the alignment. The reave is cut at one point by a much later leat and
terminates at its western end against a small circular enclosure denoted by a
1.7m wide and 0.35m high rubble wall surrounding a 12m diameter internal area.
In the centre of this enclosure is a small stone hut circle with an internal
diameter of 2.7m. Another stone hut circle lies a short distance to the south
east and this survives as a substantial bank standing up to 3m wide and 0.9m
high surrounding a 10.7m diameter internal area. A 2.3m wide and 0.4m deep
drainage ditch is visible around the upper side of this building.

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 alignments or stone rows
consist of upright stones set in single file or in avenues of two or more
parallel lines, up to several hundred metres in length. They are often
physically linked to burial monuments, such as small cairns, cists and
barrows, and are considered to have had an important ceremonial function. The
Dartmoor alignments mostly date from the Late Neolithic period (c.2400-2000
BC). Some eighty examples, most of them on the outer Moor, provide over half
the recorded national population. Due to their comparative rarity and
longevity as a monument type, all surviving examples are considered nationally
important, unless very badly damaged.

The relationship between the stone alignment and reave 600m north east of
Horseyeatt is especially important as it graphically illustrates the
chronological range within this monument as well as providing more general
information on the relative date of stone alignments. Within this monument it
is clear that the stone alignment was built first and that the reave was added
at a later date. Two of the cairns have very obvious internal structures, and
whilst more cairns of this type may come to light, they are currently
considered to be rare. The small circular enclosure containing a stone circle
is unusual as is the presence of the well-preserved ditch around the upper
part of the other impressive stone hut circle. Together this group of
structures survives well and will contain information about the use of this
area of the Moor for ritual and burial activity, settlement and land division
in the later prehistoric period.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, (1994), 85
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, (1994), 43
Butler, J, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, (1994), 44

Source: Historic England

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