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Historic England Research Records

Monument Number 1128265

Hob Uid: 1128265
Location :
Somerset
Somerset West and Taunton
Luxborough, Withycombe
Grid Ref : SS9994438080
Summary : A Post Medieval water meadow system, known locally as a catchwater meadow, is visible on aerial photographs as a series of earthworks south of Slowley Farm, Luxborough. Catchwater meadows used a series of approximately parallel gutters to distribute flowing water evenly over the surface of the meadow in order to prevent freezing in winter and encourage early growth in spring, thereby providing extra feed for livestock. Most catchwater meadows are believed to date to the Post Medieval period, although it is possible that they were first developed in the Medieval period
More information : A water meadow system at Slowley farm was noted on aerial photographs. (1-2)

The earthwork remains of a fragmented water meadow system associated with the post medieval farmstead of Slowley were seen at SS 9995 3807. The water meadow survives as ditches running parallel to the hillside. The ditches were seen as earthworks and mapped from aerial photographs. (3)

A post medieval water meadow system, known locally as a catchwater meadow, is visible on aerial photographs as a series of earthworks south of Slowley Farm, Luxborough. Centred at approximately ST 0002 3805, at least six gutters are visible, following the contours of the south-east facing slope below Slowley Farm. At least one appears to be connected to the farmyard at Slowley Farm, suggesting that this was an integrated system which also distributed liquid manure as fertiliser to the fields. The system covers an area of approximately 2.8 hectares.
Catchwater meadows used a series of approximately parallel gutters to distribute flowing water evenly over the surface of the meadow in order to prevent freezing in winter and encourage early growth in spring, thereby providing extra feed for livestock. Most catchwater meadows are believed to date to the post medieval period, although it is possible that they were first developed in the medieval period (4-5).

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Externally held archive reference
Source details : Francis P, 1984, "A Survey and Description of the Catch Meadow Irrigation Systems", BA dissertation, SCPD
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Source Number : 2
Source : Oblique aerial photograph reference number
Source details : RAF CPE/UK/1980 3288 April 1947
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Source Number : 3
Source : Vertical aerial photograph reference number
Source details : RAF F26/543/2821/135-6 27-APR-1964
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Source Number : 4
Source : Vertical aerial photograph reference number
Source details : RAF 543/2821 (F62) 133-34 27-APR-1964
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Source Number : 5
Source : Externally held archive reference
Source details : Cook, H. and Williamson, T. 2007 "Water Meadows: History, Ecology and Conservation" Windgather Press, Cheshire page(s) 1-7, 28-29
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : Post Medieval
Monument End Date : 1901
Monument Start Date : 1540
Monument Type : Water Meadow
Evidence : Earthwork

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : SMR Number (Somerset)
External Cross Reference Number : 34494
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SS 93 NE 87
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, RCHME: BRENDON HILLS MAPPING PROJECT, NMP
Activity type : AERIAL PHOTOGRAPH INTERPRETATION
Start Date : 1998-01-01
End Date : 1998-10-01
Associated Activities : Primary, ENGLISH HERITAGE: EXMOOR NATIONAL PARK NMP
Activity type : AERIAL PHOTOGRAPH INTERPRETATION
Start Date : 2007-04-01
End Date : 2009-07-01