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HER Number:MDV70967
Name:Corn-drying barn 1, Houndtor


One of three barns for drying crops at Houndtor believed to have been later additions in response to worsening weather conditions. A substantial structure with a large platform at the south-western end to house a kiln and oven.


Grid Reference:SX 745 787
Map Sheet:SX77NW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishManaton
Ecclesiastical ParishMANATON

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX77NW/7/10
  • Old SAM County Ref: 601
  • Old SAM Ref Revised: 28786
  • SHINE Candidate (Yes)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • BARN (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD (Between))

Full description

Minter, E. M., 1972 - 1973, 11 Years of Archaeological Work on Dartmoor, 114-116 (Article in Serial). SDV307263.

On the north side of the village were corn-drying barns, with large stone platforms at the upper ends of the structures to accommodate two circular kilns entered at floor level by separate flues.

Beresford, G., 1979, Three Deserted Medieval Settlements on Dartmoor: a Report on the Late E. Marie Minter's Excavations, 142 (Article in Serial). SDV307264.

Corn-drying barns 1-3 at Houndtor were well preserved and are associated with the last structural period of settlement (around 1250-1350), although the date of construction cannot be dated more precisely. The driers were substantial structures housed within a raised platform faced with stone and packed with rubble and growan, spanning the width of the building, 12 foot wide, 8 foot deep and around 4 foot high. Originally there were two kilns per platform, but at a later date all the kilns on the right hand side of the driers were filled in and replaced with high level ovens. The vertical sides of the kilns, 4 foot in diameter, had no paved floors and showed little signs of burning. They were heated by way of a straight-sided flue, 2 foot long by 1 foot, 6 inches, the entrance of which and the surrounding ground were burnt by firing. The sides of the ovens were more severely burnt. No evidence remained to indicate what the floors of the barns were like, or what kind of roofs they possessed.

Newman, P. + Probert, S. + Riley, H., 1994, Houndtor Down, Manaton, Devon - A New Survey by the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England., 5 (Report - Survey). SDV344628.

The three corn drying barns on the Hound Tor settlement are all located on the northern side of the site, with single entrances on the south side, although this is only seen clearly in barn 1. The structures are constructed of stone, in a style similar to that of the associated dwellings and are roughly rectangular in shape. Barns 1 and 3 have curved south-western end walls, but this may be the result of erosion or post-excavation disturbance. Each barn contains a grain dryer at the south-western end, housed in a raised platform. Barn 1 measures 9 meters by 4 meters internally and is the best preserved on the site, located on the extreme west of the three barns. The excavated remains of the circular hollow described as a kiln by Beresford (1979, fig 24) and masonry-lined openings into the kiln and over at the base of the platform are still visible.

Dartmoor National Park + English Heritage, 2002, Houndtor: Deserted Medieval Settlement, 8-11 (Leaflet). SDV295904.

Barn 1 is aligned south-west to north-east with a central opening in the south wall. The coursed stone rubble corn-drying barn measures approximately 10 meters by 5 meters and is located to the west of the settlement. The building had an oven & kiln at the south-western end for drying crops.

Ordnance Survey, 2010, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV344030.

Map object based on this Source.

Sources / Further Reading

  • Leaflet: Dartmoor National Park + English Heritage. 2002. Houndtor: Deserted Medieval Settlement. A5 Stapled. 8-11.
  • Article in Serial: Minter, E. M.. 1972 - 1973. 11 Years of Archaeological Work on Dartmoor. Transactions of the Torquay Natural History Society. 16. Unknown. 114-116.
  • Article in Serial: Beresford, G.. 1979. Three Deserted Medieval Settlements on Dartmoor: a Report on the Late E. Marie Minter's Excavations. Medieval Archaeology. 23. Unknown. 142.
  • Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2010. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey. Map (Digital).
  • Report - Survey: Newman, P. + Probert, S. + Riley, H.. 1994. Houndtor Down, Manaton, Devon - A New Survey by the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England.. Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England Report. A4 Spiral Bound. 5.

Associated Monuments

MDV7414Part of: Deserted Medieval Settlement at Hound Tor (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Jan 29 2013 12:54PM