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HER Number:MDV4164
Name:Ring Cairn 340 metres east of White Tor


Ring cairn, 6 metres diameter and 0.4 metres high, with a kerb of small stones defining the outer edge of the mound. The hollow in the centre is the result of excavation in 1899 which recovered a perforated stone.


Grid Reference:SX 545 786
Map Sheet:SX57NW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishPeter Tavy
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishPETER TAVY

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX57NW/52/1
  • Old SAM County Ref: 545A
  • Old SAM Ref: 22206
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX57NW7
  • Pastscape: 439741

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • RING CAIRN (Early Neolithic to Late Bronze Age - 4000 BC to 701 BC (Between))

Full description

National Monuments Record, 02/04/2013, 439741 (National Monuments Record Database). SDV351033.

Three prehistoric round cairns on the eastern slopes of Whittor. The most northerly cairn has a diameter of 7.5 metres and a height of 0.4 metres, and has a rim of stones. The westerly cairn has a diameter of 9.0 metres and a height of 0.4 metres and consists of an amorphous mass of large scattered stones. The easterly cairn has a diameter of approximately 12.5 metres and a height of 0.6 metres. This group of three disturbed and mutilated cairns is situated on a fairly exposed ridge of high ground in open boulder-free moorland and is composed of earth and scattered stones. All three cairns are in a very ruinous condition. The 10 additional cairns depicted around these cairns on the rchme app transcript could not be traced on the ground and they almost certainly do not exist. The spongy moorland turf in this area is easily disfigured by animal paths, vehicle tracks and water channels. The small sub-circular ditch-type patterns evident on the RCHME aerial photog no. SX5478/1.229 are the result of natural and artificial activity and have no archaeological significance.

Grinsell, L. V., 1978, Dartmoor Barrows, 160, No. 24. (Article in Serial). SDV273224.

Cairn, probably that excavated by Baring-Gould circa 1898 in which a perforated spatulate implement was found, now in Plymouth Museum. Diameter 8.0 metres, height 0.3 metres.

Gerrard, S., 1990-1994, Monument Protection Programme (Report - Survey). SDV350743.

Round cairn, 6 metres in diameter, 0.4 metres high. A kerb of small stones defines the outer edge of the mound. Given the known history of this site it seems most likely that the central hollow was caused by the documented excavation rather than being an original feature.

Newman, P., 2003, The Langstone Moor Stone Circle, Peter Tavy, Devon and its Prehistoric Environs, 5, Fig. 2 (Report - Survey). SDV255420.

The most northerly of the group. It has been extensively flattened but traces of a stony ring are visible around the circumference.

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

Cairn marked on modern mapping. Map object based on this source.

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

Round cairn 340 metres east of White Tor summit. This monument includes a round cairn situated on a gentle south-east facing slope overlooking the valley of the River Walkham. The cairn mound measures 6m in diameter and stands up to 0.4m high. A hollow in the centre of the mound measuring 3m in diameter and 0.3m deep is the result of a partial excavation carried out by the Dartmoor Exploration Committee in 1899. This work recovered a perforated stone. A kerb of small stones defines the outer edge of the mound.

Griffith, F. M., 26/08/1986, Cairn at White Tor (Personal Comment). SDV227691.

Site visit 24th August 1986.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, Unknown, SX57NW7 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV227688.

Site visit 17th July 1950. Cairn, 7 metres diameter, 0.3 metres high.
Site visit 19th November 1978. A turf-coverd cairn of platform type. 8.0 metres metres by 7.5 metres by 0.4 metres high. A ring of spaced, smallish boulders, 5.2 metres in diameter protrudes through the tuf on the flat top of the mound.

Sources / Further Reading

  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. Unknown. SX57NW7. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
  • Personal Comment: Griffith, F. M.. 26/08/1986. Cairn at White Tor. Not applicable.
  • Report - Survey: Newman, P.. 2003. The Langstone Moor Stone Circle, Peter Tavy, Devon and its Prehistoric Environs. English Heritage Archaeological Investigation Report. 25. A4 Comb Bound. 5, Fig. 2.
  • Article in Serial: Grinsell, L. V.. 1978. Dartmoor Barrows. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 36. A5 Paperback. 160, No. 24..
  • Report - Survey: Gerrard, S.. 1990-1994. Monument Protection Programme. Monument Protection Programme. Unknown.
  • National Heritage List for England: English Heritage. 2013. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital.
  • Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.
  • National Monuments Record Database: National Monuments Record. 02/04/2013. 439741. National Monuments Record Database. Website.

Associated Monuments

MDV12793Related to: Cairn 350 metres east of White Tor, Peter Tavy (Monument)
MDV4163Related to: Long Cairn 350 metres east of White Tor, Peter Tavy (Monument)
MDV4118Related to: Round cairn and cist 440 metres east of White Tor summit (Monument)

Associated Finds

  • FDV5328 - PERFORATED OBJECT (Prehistoric - 698000 BC to 42 AD)

Associated Events

  • EDV7275 - Survey of the Langstone Moor stone circle and other prehistoric monuments nearby

Date Last Edited:Jun 5 2017 2:03PM