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Prehistoric field system and settlements on Kerswell Down and Whilborough Common

A Scheduled Monument in Kingskerswell, Devon

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Coordinates

Latitude: 50.4951 / 50°29'42"N

Longitude: -3.595 / 3°35'41"W

OS Eastings: 286964.344545

OS Northings: 67353.483519

OS Grid: SX869673

Mapcode National: GBR QS.G61C

Mapcode Global: FRA 37CR.78F

Entry Name: Prehistoric field system and settlements on Kerswell Down and Whilborough Common

Scheduled Date: 3 September 2004

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1021377

English Heritage Legacy ID: 36029

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Kingskerswell

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Kingskerswell St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

Details

The monument, which falls into two areas, includes a prehistoric field
system, together with settlements situated on Kerswell Down and Whilborough
Common. The field system survives as a series of interconnected banks
forming several rectilinear fields. The fields are aligned on two main axes
and the boundaries themselves survive as low rubble banks measuring 2m wide
and 0.2m high. There are several small clearance cairns within the field
system and at NGR SX 86886748 is an 80m diameter circular enclosure. A large
number of circular platforms survive within the monument and whilst some may
represent the remains of early quarries others are the stances for small
prehistoric houses.
The concrete bases for benches and made up footpath surfaces are excluded
from the scheduling, although the ground beneath is included.

MAP EXTRACT
The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Stone hut circles and hut circle settlements were the dwelling places of
prehistoric farmers. Most date from the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). The stone-
based round-houses consist of low walls or banks enclosing a circular floor
area; the remains of the turf, thatch or heather roofs 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 or stone. Frequently traces of their associated
field systems may be found immediately around them. These may be indicated by
areas of clearance cairns and/or the remains of field walls and other
enclosures. The longevity of use of hut circle settlements and their
relationship with other monument types provides 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 prehistoric field system and settlements on Kerswell Down and Whilborough
Common survive well and will contain important archaeological information
relating to the use of this area during prehistoric times. Excavations on
similar sites in the vicinity have highlighted the importance of this area
during the prehistoric period.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Books and journals
Quinn, G F, 'Devon Archaeological Society Proceedings' in A New Survey of the Prehistoric Field System on Kerswell Etc., , Vol. 53, (1995), 131-4
Quinn, G F, 'Devon Archaeological Society Proceedings' in A New Survey of the Prehistoric Field System on Kerswell Etc., , Vol. 53, (1995), 131-4
Quinn, G F, 'Devon Archaeological Society Proceedings' in A New Survey of the Prehistoric Field System on Kerswell Etc., , Vol. 53, (1995), 131-4

Source: Historic England

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