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HER Number:MDV12929
Name:Medieval Longhouse on Crownhill Down, Sparkwell


Medieval longhouse and possible barn withiin a Prehistoric field system on Crownhill Down


Grid Reference:SX 575 608
Map Sheet:SX56SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishSparkwell
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishPLYMPTON ST.MARY

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: 439474
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX56SE/144
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX56SE129

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • LONGHOUSE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Full description

Edwards, C., 1979, An archaeological survey of an area surrounding Hemerdon Ball (Report - Survey). SDV337241.

Visited on 13th July 1979 a Medieval longhouse and associated enclosures sited in a grassy sheltered gully within the Prehistoric field system in an area otherwise of heather and gorse, are the remains of a possible Medieval longhouse and two associated enclosures. These flank a remodelled section of the Prehistoric field system notable for its abundance of stone and comparitively clearly defined shape by comparison with the remainder of the system. The longhouse containing at least one division and the walls of both it and the two enclosures consist of earth and stones denuded but definable. Longhouse length 11 metres by 5 metres wide by 0.2 metres high. One enclosure is 8 metres long by 3 metres wide and the other is 8 metres log by 5 metres wide.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1979 - 1980, SX56SE129, SX56SE129 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV343622.

A Medieval farmstead visited on 3rd October 1980 at SX57506087 is situated in a grassy, bowl-shaped, depression under the crest of the Crownhill Down ridge. There appear to be two buildings, one ('A') in a large banked and walled field, the other ('B'), adjoins the west side of the field. Both are aligned with the slope. Building A: internal measurements approximately 13 metres by 4 metres but the northern end is either destroyed or concealed. The 'walling' is no more than 0.1 metres high and about 0.6 metres wide, seemingly a single line of stones banked with earth. Building B: possibly a barn with internal measurements about 18.3 metres by 2.9 metres with a possible subdivision and an entrance gap midway along the building the gap leading into the field to the east. The walling is mostly footings of small stones, 0.1 metres high with a few boulders. Edward's considered Building B to be two adjoining buildings but it seems likely to be a longhouse from both the measurements and the situation. The lack of any real walling suggests early and possibly timber structures. Other details: Plan.

Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England, 1985, SX56SE (Cartographic). SDV336987.

Not recorded on the 1985 interpretation.

Butler, J., 1994, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Three - The South-West, 194-6. Map 52, Figure 52.16 (Monograph). SDV137656.

Longhouse not shown on Figure 52.16 but two possible hut circles are shown in the two rectangular fields shown to the west of the 'Tor'.

National Monuments Record, 2002, 439474 (National Monuments Record Database). SDV343623.

The remains of this small Medieval farmstead were not identified because the area is now covered by dense mature gorse and bracken.

Fletcher, M., 2002, The Archaeological Landscape of Crownhill Down and Ridding Down: Survey Report, 5 (Report - Survey). SDV343412.

Settlement completely obscured by gorse. Other details: Figure 3 and Crownhill Down Survey.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV137656Monograph: Butler, J.. 1994. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Three - The South-West. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Three - The South-West. Three. Paperback Volume. 194-6. Map 52, Figure 52.16.
SDV336987Cartographic: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. 1985. SX56SE. Air Photographs Unit. Map (Paper).
SDV337241Report - Survey: Edwards, C.. 1979. An archaeological survey of an area surrounding Hemerdon Ball. Devon Committee for Rescue Archaeology Report. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV343412Report - Survey: Fletcher, M.. 2002. The Archaeological Landscape of Crownhill Down and Ridding Down: Survey Report. English Heritage Report. AI/31/2002. A4 Stapled + Digital. 5.
SDV343622Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1979 - 1980. SX56SE129. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index. SX56SE129.
SDV343623National Monuments Record Database: National Monuments Record. 2002. 439474. National Monuments Record Index. A4 Stapled + Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV2559Related to: Medieval Longhouse on Crownhill Down, Sparkwell (Monument)
MDV2558Related to: Prehistoric Field System on Crownhill Down, Cornwood (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4559 - Archaeological Landscape of Crownhill Down and Riddding Down

Date Last Edited:Jan 16 2022 11:30AM