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HER Number:MDV112347
Name:Catch Meadow South of Ford Farm

Summary

A catch meadow of probable 19th century date is visible as a series of earthwork ditches on aerial photographs of 1946 onwards, to the south of Ford Farm, with which it was probably associated.

Location

Grid Reference:SY 016 865
Map Sheet:SY08NW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishWoodbury
DistrictEast Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishWOODBURY

Protected Status

  • SHINE: Earthworks of Catch (water)meadow, south of Ford Farm, Woodbury

Other References/Statuses

  • SHINE Candidate (Yes)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CATCH MEADOW (Post Medieval to Modern - 1540 AD to 2013 AD (Between))

Full description

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/CPE/UK/1823, RAF/CPE/UK/1823 RP 3003-04 04-NOV-1946 (Aerial Photograph). SDV354994.

The catch meadow is visible as a series of earthwork ditches.


Environment Agency, 1998-2012, LiDAR DSM data JPEG image (1m resolution), LIDAR SY0186 Environment Agency JPEG DSM 06-DEC-2005 & 19-DEC-2005 (Cartographic). SDV357034.

The drain which bisects the system is visible as an earthwork ditch.


Hegarty, C. + Knight, S. + Sims, R., 2014-2015, East and Mid Devon River Catchments National Mapping Programme Project (Interpretation). SDV356883.

A catch meadow of probable 19th century date is visible as a series of earthwork ditches on aerial photographs of 1946 onwards, to the south of Ford Farm, with which it was probably associated. Most catch meadow systems are believed to date to the post medieval period, although it is likely that they were first developed in the medieval period. Catch meadows provided a simple, inexpensive and effective form of irrigation. When irrigation was required water was diverted from a source such as a pond, river, spring or spring-fed stream and passed along the meadow slopes via one or more of the gutters, which was then caused to overflow. The lower, roughly parallel gutters then ‘caught’ and redistributed water passing it evenly over the surface of a meadow below. The gently flowing water prevented the ground freezing in winter and encouraged early growth in spring, thereby providing extra feed for livestock, particularly important during the hungry gap of March and April. The catch meadow covers an area of approximately 0.79 hectares of gentle southwest facing slope, approximately 40m to the south of Ford Farm. The system comprises a series of parallel gutters which measure less than 2m in width and appear to tap a drain which bisects the system and which may have diverted a watercourse which rises at the farm. This water meadow might have also operated as what has been called an ‘integrated’ catch meadow, in which manure from the cow sheds within the farmyard was mixed with the water supply to supply liquid manure to the pasture. The drain which bisects the catch meadow remains visible as an earthwork ditch on Lidar-derived images of 2005.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV354994Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/CPE/UK/1823. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). RAF/CPE/UK/1823 RP 3003-04 04-NOV-1946. [Mapped feature: #71744 ]
SDV356883Interpretation: Hegarty, C. + Knight, S. + Sims, R.. 2014-2015. East and Mid Devon River Catchments National Mapping Programme Project. AC Archaeology Report. Digital.
SDV357034Cartographic: Environment Agency. 1998-2012. LiDAR DSM data JPEG image (1m resolution). Environment Agency LiDAR data. Digital. LIDAR SY0186 Environment Agency JPEG DSM 06-DEC-2005 & 19-DEC-2005.

Associated Monuments: none recorded

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV6530 - The East and Mid-Devon Rivers Catchment NMP project (Ref: ACD613)

Date Last Edited:May 25 2018 9:38AM