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HER Number:MDV13221
Name:Field System to the north of Piles Copse, Harford


Fragmentary prehistoric field system on a steep slope above the River Erme which could be associated with local settlements


Grid Reference:SX 645 624
Map Sheet:SX66SW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishHarford
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishHARFORD

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX66SW/118

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • FIELD SYSTEM (Constructed, Bronze Age - 2200 BC to 701 BC (Between))

Full description

Hankin, C. F., 1977-1979, Harford Parish Checklist (Worksheet). SDV149931.

Site visited on 10th January 1978.

Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England, 1985, Aerial Photograph Project (Dartmoor) - Dartmoor Pre-NMP (Cartographic). SDV319854.

Not visible on aerial photographs.

Butler, J., 1993, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Four - The South-East, 48, Map 54, Figure 54.8 (Monograph). SDV337765.

Collection of small enclosures with only two huts sited to take advantage of the large amount of surface stone cloaking this part of the hillside. Most of it is masked by a thin coat of vegetation and only the exposed areas are indicated on the plan. The majority of enclosures are merely irregularly shaped clearings but there are also three approximately rectangular fields on the north-western edge of the clitter bounded by a double walls of slabs. The slope is steep and whilst some walls are no doubt completely buried others have probably disintegrated so far as to become unrecognisable. Only two associated huts have been located, Hut 1 freestanding near the south end and Hut 2 built into the wall of the most easterly enclosure.

Gerrard, S., 1993-2002, Monument Protection Programme Alternative Action Report (Report - non-specific). SDV145710.

Newman, P., 2018, Erme Valley Survey data (GIS and Excel spreadsheet) (Cartographic). SDV361913.

Field system shown on survey.

Newman, P., 2018, The Upper Erme Valley, Dartmoor National Park, Devon: An Archaeological Survey, Appendix 1 (Report - Survey). SDV362921.

A cluster of eight amorphous, attached enclosures at the foot of the steep lower slope on the east side of the River Erme, 173 metres north of Piles Copse. The enclosures are sited amidst an area of dense clitter, some of which has been incorporated into the walls, but in general the area has not been cleared of stone. Two further groups of similar, crudely constructed enclosures are located to the north-west of this example (MDV4289 & 19978). The walls are constructed from granite boulders, some extremely large, using a random style, and although partly tumbled and spread, they stand to over 1 metre high in places and approximately 2 metres thick. The smallest of the enclosures is 4 metres by 4.5 metres and the largest is 30 metres by 23 metres. One of the central enclosures forms a nucleus onto which the others have been attached, demonstrating seven phases of expansion. Although they are constructed in a prehistoric style, no hut circles are directly associated with these enclosures, although one disturbed stony circular feature to the south at SX 64579 62443, with an overall diameter of 3.8 metres is a possible example.

Ordnance Survey, 2020, MasterMap 2020 (Cartographic). SDV363413.

Not shown on modern mapping.

National Monuments Record, 2020, Pastscape, 442430, SX66SW89 (Website). SDV363416.

Centred SX 64546248. A fragmentary field system of Bronze Age type is discernible over approximately 3.0 hectares on a steep west slope above the River Erme. The fields appear to be about 30.0 metres square, formed by lynchets following the contours and walls running with the slopes, both of loose rubble. The system could be associated with the
local prehistoric settlements.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV145710Report - non-specific: Gerrard, S.. 1993-2002. Monument Protection Programme Alternative Action Report. English Heritage. Unknown.
SDV149931Worksheet: Hankin, C. F.. 1977-1979. Harford Parish Checklist. Parish Checklist. Digital.
SDV319854Cartographic: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. 1985. Aerial Photograph Project (Dartmoor) - Dartmoor Pre-NMP. Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England Aerial Photograph P. Cartographic.
SDV337765Monograph: Butler, J.. 1993. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Four - The South-East. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Four - The South-East. Four. Paperback Volume. 48, Map 54, Figure 54.8.
SDV361913Cartographic: Newman, P.. 2018. Erme Valley Survey data (GIS and Excel spreadsheet). GIS ShapeFile. Digital.
SDV363413Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2020. MasterMap 2020. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.
SDV363416Website: National Monuments Record. 2020. Pastscape. https://www.pastscape.org.uk/. Website. 442430, SX66SW89.

Associated Monuments

MDV4289Related to: Field system of adjoining and isolated enclosures east of River Erme, Harford (Monument)
MDV4253Related to: Three adjoining enclosures forming a prehistoric settlement north of Piles Corner, Harford (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV8082 - Survey of the Upper Erme Valley

Date Last Edited:Dec 6 2020 10:37AM