Ancient Monuments

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Blowing Mill at Outer Down

A Scheduled Monument in Chagford, Devon

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Latitude: 50.664 / 50°39'50"N

Longitude: -3.8661 / 3°51'57"W

OS Eastings: 268208.347816

OS Northings: 86585.83926

OS Grid: SX682865

Mapcode National: GBR Q9.SGMH

Mapcode Global: FRA 27SB.3N4

Entry Name: Blowing Mill at Outer Down

Scheduled Date: 4 May 2012

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1406794

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


An early post-medieval tin blowing mill, terraced into a west-facing slope within the valley of the South Teign River. It is situated in the gardens to the west of Outer Down, an early-C20 country house (Grade II).

Source: Historic England


The blowing mill which is probably early post-medieval in date, survives as a roofless ruin. It is built of granite blocks and is rectangular in plan. The interior is divided into two rooms, the smaller of which contains a wheel pit against the southern wall.

The blowing mill is terraced into a west-facing slope within the valley of the South Teign River. It survives as a ruinous, rectangular building; the walls standing up to 1.7m high. The interior of the mill is divided into two rooms. The smaller, western, room measures 4.9m long by 3m wide and contains a wheel pit built against the southern wall. The eastern room measures 7.4 m long by 4.9m wide and is filled with rubble. The internal dividing wall has a 1m wide opening at its north end. Although there is no visible evidence for the furnace, the dividing wall is of a greater thickness (1.5m) than the external walls which may indicate that this is the position of the furnace. Buried archaeological deposits associated with the furnace may survive in the vicinity of this internal wall. A broken mould stone has been incorporated into the north wall of the structure. The scheduled area occupies a roughly rectangular area measuring approximately 15m by 6m.

The mortar stone and mould stone within the garden of Outer Down, that lie some distance from the scheduled monument, are not included in the scheduling.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

The blowing mill at Outer Down is scheduled for the following principal reasons:
* Archaeological interest: the site is an early post-medieval blowing mill which is of national importance for the understanding of tin smelting;
* Survival: the blowing mill has been identified as one of the best surviving blowing mills on Dartmoor;
* Potential: the site has not been excavated and will contain important archaeological and metallurgical information concerning the character and technology of early tin smelting.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Gerrard, S, The Early British Tin Industry, (2000), 129-139
Greeves, T A P, The Devon Tin Industry 1450 -1750, (1981)
Worth, R H, 'Transactions of the Devonshire Association' in A Blowing House In The Parish Of Chagford, , Vol. 59, (1927), 343-5
Blowing Mill at Outer Down, Chagford. Devon Historic Environment Record 6170,
Clampitt Leat, AMIE Monument 906788,
English Heritage, The Tin Industry, Step 3 Site Assessments: Devon, 1995,
Outer Down Blowing House, AMIE Monument 443644,
Report for MPP, Greeves, T.A.P., An assessment of Dartmoor tinworking, (1990)
Scheduling documentation: SM34517,

Source: Historic England

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