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HER Number:MDV3498
Name:Northern of Three Round Cairns 370m east-north-east of Down Tor, Walkhampton

Summary

The northernmost of a group of three round cairns is actually oval in shape, 3.5 metres by 2.3 metres, possibly the result of being cut through by a leat. It contains one of the smallest in situ cists on Dartmoor.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 583 695
Map Sheet:SX56NE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishWalkhampton
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishWALKHAMPTON

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • MPP Archaeological Item Dataset: 133340
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX56NE/174/1
  • Old SAM Ref: 24051
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX56NE127
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX56NE204

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • ROUND CAIRN (Constructed, Late Neolithic to Late Bronze Age - 3000 BC to 701 BC (Between))
  • CIST (Constructed, Bronze Age - 2200 BC to 701 BC (Between))

Full description

Birkett Dixon, E., 1958, 73rd Report on Barrows, 230, 232, Figs. 43, 46 (Article in Serial). SDV251324.

Group of five [sic] kistvaens situated in the valley of the Newleycombe Lake. The two largest kistvaens are spaced 37 feet 6 inches apart centre to centre; the smallest lies to the nroth of them, 12 feet from the western and 35 feet from the eastern.
108. Northern. The smallest Dartmoor kistvaen in situ and one of the smallest known; 12 inches wide, 21 inches deep. The south-west sidestone is 27 inches long. The opposite sidestone and the north-western endstone lean inwards. The other endstone and the cap stone are missing.


Grinsell, L. V., 1978, Dartmoor Barrows, 99, 175 (Article in Serial). SDV273224.

Site visit 2nd September 1975. Oval cairn on an east-west axis enclosing a cist placed south-east to north-west. 3.25 metres by 2.3 metres diameter, 0.3 metres high. The south-eastern slab is now visible.


Newman, P., 2007, Cramber Tor Training Area Monument Baseline Condition Survey, No. 438861 (Report - Survey). SDV348210.

Site visit 1st August 2006. A group of three small disturbed round cairns, each containing a cist revealed by partial un-recorded excavation, located within a north facing valley, 350 metres east-north-east of Down Tor. Under threat from gorse encroachment. Condition fair, status stable.


Probert, S., 2008, Follow-Up Works to Cramber Tor Archaeological Baseline Condition Survey, Dartmoor Training Area, 10, Figs. 12, 13, No. 438861 (Report - Survey). SDV351304.

Three cairns containing cists. This unusual cluster of prehistoric sepulchral monuments was threatened by small scale gorse encroachment which has now been removed.


Ordnance Survey, 2013, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV350786.

'Cairns & Cists' marked. Map object based on this source.


English Heritage, 2013, National Heritage List for England (National Heritage List for England). SDV350785.

Three round cairns 370m ENE of Down Tor. This monument includes three small round cairns, each containing a cist revealed by partial excavation, situated within a north facing valley lying between Down Tor and Hingston Hill, overlooking the valley of Newleycombe Lake. The eastern cairn survives as a 4.5m diameter mound standing up to 0.8m high. The edge of the mound is defined by a kerb of large edge set stones. In the centre of the mound is a large cist which measures 1.19m long by up to 0.71m wide and 0.94m deep. The cist is orientated from north to south and is trapezoidal in shape. The western cairn lies 6.25m from the eastern cairn and survives as a 5m diameter mound standing up to 0.6m high. Edge set stones forming the south eastern periphery of this mound indicate the presence of a kerb, which survives largely as a buried feature. In the centre of the mound is a cist which is orientated ENE to WSW and measures 1.1m long by 0.7m wide and 0.5m deep. The third cairn lies immediately to the north and is separated from the western mound by a leat which measures 0.8m wide and 0.2m deep. The cairn survives as an oval mound measuring 3.5m long by 2.3m wide, and contains one of the smallest in situ cists on Dartmoor. The cist measures 0.53m long by 0.3m wide and 0.53m deep, and is orientated south east to north west. The leat separating the western and northern cairns leads from the Newleycombe Lake and carried water to openwork tin mines to the west.
Despite partial early excavation, the three round cairns 370m ENE of Down Tor survive comparatively well and contain archaeological and environmental information relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was erected. These cairns lie within an area containing a large number of broadly contemporary ritual, funerary and settlement sites.


Gerrard, S., 25/04/1994, 133340 (Un-published). SDV351395.

Site visit 24th May 1994. Round cairn containing a cist. Cairn survives as an oval mound measuring 3.5 metres by 2.3 metres and contains on of the smallest in situ cists on Dartmoor. The cist measures 0.53 metres by 0.3 metres by 0.53 metres deep and is orientated south-east to north-west. The cairn has seen limited damage as a result of a leat being cut through part of it. This may explain the oval shape of the mound.


Greeves, T., May 2012, Cramber Tor Training Area. Monument Condition Survey, No. 438861 (Report - Survey). SDV350251.

Site visit 2nd February 2012. Condition and stability good. Gorse has been cleared. Resprouting should be monitored.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, Unknown, SX56NE127 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV251327.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, Unknown, SX56NE204 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV251325.

Site visit 2nd April 1979. The northern cist consists of two sidestones and one endstone. It measures only 0.4 metres by 0.3 metres internally and is 0.2 metres deep. The sidestones are 0.7 metres long. On the north side of the cist are two possible retaining stones protruding from the earth.

Sources / Further Reading

  • Article in Serial: Birkett Dixon, E.. 1958. 73rd Report on Barrows. 90. A5 Paperback. 230, 232, Figs. 43, 46.
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. Unknown. SX56NE204. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
  • Article in Serial: Grinsell, L. V.. 1978. Dartmoor Barrows. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 36. A5 Paperback. 99, 175.
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. Unknown. SX56NE127. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
  • Report - Survey: Newman, P.. 2007. Cramber Tor Training Area Monument Baseline Condition Survey. English Heritage. A4 Bound. No. 438861.
  • Report - Survey: Greeves, T.. May 2012. Cramber Tor Training Area. Monument Condition Survey. Tom Greeves Report. A4 Stapled. No. 438861.
  • Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.
  • Report - Survey: Probert, S.. 2008. Follow-Up Works to Cramber Tor Archaeological Baseline Condition Survey, Dartmoor Training Area. A4 Comb Bound. 10, Figs. 12, 13, No. 438861.
  • National Heritage List for England: English Heritage. 2013. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital.
  • Un-published: Gerrard, S.. 25/04/1994. 133340. Monument Protection Programme. Archaeological Item Dataset.. Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV3499Related to: Eastern of Three Round Cairns 370m east-north-east of Down Tor, Walkhampton (Monument)
MDV3497Related to: Western of Three Round Cairns 370m east-north-east of Down Tor, Walkhampton (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV6153 - Monument Baseline Condition Survey in the Cramber Tor Training Area
  • EDV6034 - Monument Condition Survey in Cramber Tor Training Area
  • EDV6152 - Follow-up Works to Threatened Sites in the Cramber Tor Training Area

Date Last Edited:Jul 8 2013 10:27AM