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HER Number:MDV12725
Name:Deserted farmstead at Deancombe


Deancombe deserted farmstead, which dates to at least 1317. The farmstead split into two holdings (east and west)in the 16th century and the western section buildings later became outbuildings for the farmstead in the 19th century. The farm was eventually abandoned in around 1922.


Grid Reference:SX 579 687
Map Sheet:SX56NE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishWalkhampton
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishWALKHAMPTON

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX 56 NE 382
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX56NE/211
  • Pastscape: 1463378

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • FARMSTEAD (XIV to Late Medieval - 1317 AD to 1539 AD (Between))

Full description

1840, Tithe Map (Cartographic). SDV339770.

Deancombe is depicted on the Tithe Map and it shows ten buildings in total, many of which are no longer standing in the late 19th century when the First Edition Ordnance Survey map was drawn, including the older farm buildings at the eastern end of the farmstead, which were replaced by the later 19th century phase of occupation.

Ordnance Survey, 1880-1899, First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map (Cartographic). SDV336179.

Deancombe Farm is depicted. The late 19th century map shows the more modern eastern farm buildings constructed in the mid 19th century and the remains of the older western buildings.

Gover, J. E. B. + Mawer, A. + Stenton, F. M., 1931, The Place-Names of Devon: Part One, 254,299 (Monograph). SDV1312.

The earliest reference to this site is in 1317.

Haynes, R. G., 1966-1969, Ruined Sites on Dartmoor, 30, 31 (Un-published). SDV150434.

Deancombe (old) A group of dry stone buildings immediately west of the modern Deancombe’s mowhay. A spring rises and flows past the buildings, which seem grouped round a yard. A fallen chimney stone seems to indicate a fireplace at the west end of one room and some suggestion of a chimmeny at the east end. A stone trough at SX5793768791 and a potato cave at SX5797168816 are also visible. The potato cave now gives rise to a spring.
The buildings were probably used as outhouses to the later Deancombe, abandoned in approximately 1922.
Deancombe new - describes the four structures in the eastern section of the farmstead (see related records). Probably built in the 19th century on this level area to replace older buildings to the westward. Water supply piped, probably from the hill above. Mowhay west of barn and beyond that the ruined buildings of an older farm.

Newman, P., 1994, Tinners and Tenants on South-West Dartmoor: a case study in landscape history, 219-221,231 (Article in Serial). SDV340414.

In 1566 division of east and west is documented. In 1506 Dennecomb is described as a 'villat' in the forester's accounts. Farm is well documented through the 16th to 19th century.

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

Various, 2018-2019, PALs Condition Recording forms, WLK-DT21 (Worksheet). SDV362781.

Visited 29/07/2019. This is the west farmstead and out buildings. West Deancombe farmstead – Large E shape -most buildings are grass covered but trees growing out of the west andnorth buildings, some buildings are grass covered but others overgrown with bracken.Photos taken

Various, 2018-2019, PALs Condition Recording photographs, WLK-DT21 (Photograph). SDV363073.

Visited 29/07/2019. photos X 3 taken of the West Deancombe buildings
1) A view of the grass covered E shaped outline of buildings. Shows most of the farmstead with an oak tree at the east end.
2) View of the buildings along the north side of West Deancombe farmstead, showing tree and bracken cover
3) View of the western most building of West Deancombe farmstead. Shows trees growing out of the north wall

National Monuments Record, 2019, Pastscape (Website). SDV362732.

The post-Medieval farmsteads of West and East Deancombe situated on a south-facing slope overlooking the Narrator Brook. East Deancombe survives as a group of at least four rectangular buildings in a irregular shaped farmyard. The farmhouse is a five-roomed building which is now filled with loose rubble. The barns lie on the other side of the trackway which leads from east to west through the farmyard. West Deancombe farmstead which is adjacent to East Deancombe includes at least six drystone buildings, a garden plot platform with staddle stones and a hull. The entrance to the hull has collapsed although the rest of the structure probably still survives. The earliest known reference to Deancombe Farm comes in 1317 when it was a single farm. In 1566 two farms are recorded. By the early part of the 20th century the single farmstead was abandoned as a direct result of the building of the Burrator Reservoir.
The well preserved roofless ruins of this farmstead are free from vegetation cover. The staddle stone bases survive in situ. Surveyed at 1:2500 (citing Fletcher, M. J., 11/01/2008, English Heritage Field Investigation).

Sources / Further Reading

SDV1312Monograph: Gover, J. E. B. + Mawer, A. + Stenton, F. M.. 1931. The Place-Names of Devon: Part One. The Place-Names of Devon: Part One. VIII. A5 Hardback. 254,299.
SDV150434Un-published: Haynes, R. G.. 1966-1969. Ruined Sites on Dartmoor. Ruined Sites on Dartmoor. Manuscript + Digital. 30, 31.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV339770Cartographic: 1840. Tithe Map. Tithe Map and Apportionment. Map (Paper).
SDV340414Article in Serial: Newman, P.. 1994. Tinners and Tenants on South-West Dartmoor: a case study in landscape history. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 126. A5 Paperback. 219-221,231.
SDV350786Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #80622 ]
SDV362732Website: National Monuments Record. 2019. Pastscape. https://www.pastscape.org.uk/. Website.
SDV362781Worksheet: Various. 2018-2019. PALs Condition Recording forms. PALs Condition Assessment Project Forms. Digital. WLK-DT21.
SDV363073Photograph: Various. 2018-2019. PALs Condition Recording photographs. PALs Condition Assessment Project Forms. Digital. WLK-DT21.

Associated Monuments

MDV103764Parent of: Barn at Deancombe Farm (Building)
MDV20654Parent of: New Deancombe Farmhouse (Building)
MDV103765Parent of: Shippon and carthouse at Deancombe Farm (Building)
MDV12740Related to: Building at Deancombe Farm, Walkhampton (Building)
MDV12726Related to: Potato cave near Deancombe Farm (Monument)
MDV12741Related to: Potato cave near Deancombe Farm (Monument)
MDV30833Related to: Pottery and flint found near Narrator Brook, Sheepstor (Find Spot)
MDV30821Related to: Pottery sherds found near Deancombe Farm, Walkhampton (Find Spot)
MDV3433Related to: Ruined farmstead at Middleworth, Walkhampton (Monument)
MDV30823Related to: Stoneware sherd found near Deancombe Farm, Walkhampton (Find Spot)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Aug 6 2019 3:10PM