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HER Number:MDV14690
Name:Cairn 400 metres east of Lydford Tor, Dartmoor Forest


Cairn of 4.5 metres diameter by 0.4 metres to the east of Lydford Tor with a cist of 1.25 metres by 0.6 metres by 0.65 metres deep and the coverstone to the north-west


Grid Reference:SX 603 780
Map Sheet:SX67NW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishDartmoor Forest
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishLYDFORD

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX67NW101
  • National Record of the Historic Environment: 442789
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX67NW/119
  • Old SAM Ref: 34476

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CAIRN CIRCLE (Constructed, Bronze Age - 2200 BC (Between) to 701 BC (Between))
  • CIST (Constructed, Bronze Age - 2200 BC (Between) to 701 BC (Between))

Full description

Grinsell, L. V., 1978, Dartmoor Barrows, 148, Lydford 41a (Article in Serial). SDV273224.

(12/06/1976) Diameter 4.5m, height 0.25m. The retaining circle encloses a cist aligned almost north-south, with a capstone to the west.

Turner, J., 1978, Field work on Dartmoor, 3 (Article in Serial). SDV225201.

Visited in 1976. Cairn north of Beardown. Cairn stone ring of 4 metres diameter. Cist 45 by 106 centimetres. Capstone on west side of cairn.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1980, SX67NW101 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV227506.

(24/04/1980) SX 6031 7808: On a slight east slope at 485 metres OD is a cairn with a cist. The cairn, 4.5 metres by 5.6 metres and 0.4 metres high has spread over the remains of a contiguous kerb 4.6 metres in diameter. The cist measures 1.25 metres by 0.6 metres and is 0.65 metres deep. It is aligned north-south with its coverstone to the north west (see ground photograph).
Surveyed at 1:10000 on MSD.

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

Not visible on RAF 1951 aerial photographs.

Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England, 1987-1993, Duchy Farms Project Survey Visit, S. A. J. Probert (Report - Survey). SDV350839.

(20/07/1988) A cairn and cist are on slight east facing moorland slope at SX 6031 7808. The turf covered cairn, 4.4 metres diameter, 0.3 metres high is largely encircled by a kerb of small upright slabs, 0.3 metres high.
The cist, orientated almost north to south, is 1.2 metres by a maximum of 0.7 metres and 0.6 metres deep. Three of the cist slabs lean inwards at the top, the fourth, east slab remains upright. The bottom of the cist contains several slabs. The coverstone is visible to the north west partially buried in the cairn.
An accumulation of peat around the cairn has been disturbed to the west by digging.

Turner, J. R., 1990, Ring Cairns, Stone Circles and Related Monuments on Dartmoor, 47 75 fig 18/e27 (Article in Serial). SDV229817.

Turner gives grid reference as SX 60337808. Platform circle, ring of kerbstones, 4.5m internal diameter, enclosing flat-topped cairn 0.3m high, with central cist. The kerb stones are small and quite spaced.

Butler, J., 1991, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Two - The North, 63, 239, Map 29 (Monograph). SDV219155.

Lydford Tor E cairn at SX60357808 of 4.5 metres diameter by 0.4 metres high. Cairn with a cist empty and exposed lying 20 metres from the edge of a tinners' gully. Both side and an end slab are in place and about half the retaining circle, 4.5 metres across, shows above the turf.

Newman, P., 2004, Merrivale Range Baseline Condition Survey (Report - Survey). SDV346874.

(10/08/2004) Condition as described in 1988 though the disturbed area is stable.

English Heritage, 2005-2008, Prehistoric Survey Information (Cartographic). SDV345521.

Cairn shown on survey.

Ordnance Survey, 2022, Mastermap 2022 (Cartographic). SDV364674.

'Cairn & Cist' shown on modern mapping.

Historic England, 2022, National Heritage List for England, 1021179 (National Heritage List for England). SDV364675.

The cairn survives as a 5 metres diameter flat-topped mound standing up to 0.6 metres high. Edge set stones protruding up to 0.25 metres high around the western edge of the mound represent a kerb which survives elsewhere as a buried feature. In the centre of the mound is a cist which is orientated north-south and measures 1.23 metres long by 0.65 metres wide and 0.65 metres deep. A large slab lying a short distance to the north-west of the cist represents a coverstone displaced during an earlier investigation.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV219155Monograph: Butler, J.. 1991. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Two - The North. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Two - The North. Two. Paperback Volume. 63, 239, Map 29.
SDV225201Article in Serial: Turner, J.. 1978. Field work on Dartmoor. Devon Archaeological Society Newsletter. 9 Jan. 3.
SDV227506Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1980. SX67NW101. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV229817Article in Serial: Turner, J. R.. 1990. Ring Cairns, Stone Circles and Related Monuments on Dartmoor. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 48. Paperback Volume. 47 75 fig 18/e27.
SDV273224Article in Serial: Grinsell, L. V.. 1978. Dartmoor Barrows. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 36. A5 Paperback. 148, Lydford 41a.
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.
SDV345521Cartographic: English Heritage. 2005-2008. Prehistoric Survey Information. English Heritage. Digital.
SDV346874Report - Survey: Newman, P.. 2004. Merrivale Range Baseline Condition Survey. Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England Report. Unknown.
SDV350839Report - Survey: Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England. 1987-1993. Duchy Farms Project Survey Visit. Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England Archaeological Survey. Unknown. S. A. J. Probert.
SDV364674Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2022. Mastermap 2022. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #81316 ]
SDV364675National Heritage List for England: Historic England. 2022. National Heritage List for England. Digital. 1021179.

Associated Monuments

MDV105668Related to: Streamworks north of Beardown Tor (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV7441 - Condition survey of the archaeological sites of Merrivale Training Area
  • EDV7570 - Condition survey of Merrivale Range training area
  • EDV8643 - Beardown Farm, Duchy Farms Survey
  • EDV8409 - Dartmoor Royal Forest Project
  • EDV8713 - Merrivale Range: Monument Baseline Condition Survey

Date Last Edited:Aug 13 2022 11:32AM