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HER Number:MDV2450
Name:Enclosed hut circle settlement at Shaugh Moor

Summary

An oval bank defined hut circle enclosure of probable Bronze Age to Iron Age date is visible on aerial photographs of 1946 to 1978 on Shaugh Moor. Four hut circles are clearly visible within the enclosure and a possible fifth is visible as an indistinct earthwork. The site was excavated prior to destruction by the expansion of Shaugh Lake China Clay Works, recording evidence of six probable hut circles.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 565 637
Map Sheet:SX56SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishShaugh Prior
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishSHAUGH PRIOR

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX56SE/37

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • ENCLOSED HUT CIRCLE SETTLEMENT (Middle Bronze Age to Early Iron Age - 1400 BC to 301 BC (Between))

Full description

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/3G/TUD/UK/223, RAF/3G/TUD/UK/223 Vp2 5142-5143 12-JUL-1946 (Aerial Photograph). SDV352279.

An oval enclosure is visible as an earthwork.

Royal Air Force, 1946 - 1949, Royal Air Force Aerial Photographs (Aerial Photograph). SDV342938.

Settlement visible on the aerial photography.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1950, SX56SE42, 23/05/1950 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV139028.

These antiquities have been virtually destroyed during the extending of the tips of the Shaugh Lake China Clay Works. With the exception of the parts delineated by red ink, the whole of the enclosures and hut circles were under watch. The enclosure wall remaining consists of small turf covered stones and reaches a height of about 0.5 metres.

National Monuments Record, 1977, NMR SX5663, 1 (31/5/1978) (Aerial Photograph). SDV150833.

Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England, 1978, NMR 1247, NMR 1247/218-219 31-MAY-1978 (Aerial Photograph). SDV363091.

The enclosure is visible as an excavated feature.

Devon County Council Conservation Section, 1978, Shaugh Moor Photographs (Photograph). SDV139029.

Photograph taken August 1978 by Western Morning News (reference AM875/6) in parish file.

Silvester, R. J., 1979, The Relationship of First Millennium Settlement to the Upland Areas of the South West, 177, figure 1 (Article in Serial). SDV177352.

Recently excavated site 15 produced meagre pottery evidence but radiocarbon dating implies continued occupation well into the 1st millennium.

Wainwright, G. J. + Fleming, A. + Smith, K., 1979, The Shaugh Moor Project: First Report (Article in Serial). SDV138650.

Oval enclosure 74 metres by 60 metres, surrounded by a single stone wall. Inside were five circular stone houses, roofs of timber uprights. Paved floors with drains. Entrance porches. One circular building entirely of timber. Site probably occupied from about 1400 to 700 BC, with a maximum population of 12 adults. In area of pasture some distance from any field system.

Wainwright, G. J. + Smith, K., 1979, The South Dartmoor Project 1976-1979, 132-135, figure (Article in Serial). SDV139032.

Wainwright, G. J. + Smith, K., 1980, The Shaugh Moor Project: Second Report - The Enclosure, 65-122 (Article in Serial). SDV139030.

Timms, S., 1981, Shaugh Moor enclosure, 12/10/1981 (Personal Comment). SDV139031.

The enclosure, which contained the remains of five round houses and other structures was totally excavated by the Central Excavation Unit (Department of Environment) in 1977 and 1978. The site has now been obliterated by china clay waste tips. Stones from the round houses have been re-erected at schools in Newton Abbot, Ivybridge, Tavistock and Eggbuckland. Full excavation report in the Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society reports.

Balaam, N. D. + Smith, K. + Wainwright, G. J., 1982, The Shaugh Moor Project: Fourth Report - Environment, Context and Conclusion, 216-18, 268-9, Figure 8 (Article in Serial). SDV145845.

Excavation revealed that beneath the enclosure walls was a charcoal rich loam containing flint and stone artefacts. The wall core was a two-period structure with intra-mural structures built up against it.
There is a group of pre-enclosure pits and hollows, together with a scatter of charcoal and flints radiocarbon date of 1320 +- 80 BC (radiocarbon years) was produced from this pre-enclosure phase. House 15 pre-dates the enclosure.
The enclosure wall is of mixed construction from a simple tip to coursed construction. The wall contains orthostats, and overlies the drains of 2 houses. There is no definite entrance, yet there could exist the base of a style. As no phosphate deposits were found inside the enclosure, this could have been the only entrance to exclude animals. Angular buildings in the north-east of the enclosure were probably store houses, as no phosphate deposits were found. The settlement may have been founded by 1500bc (radiocarbon years). At around 1200 BC (radiocarbon years) the settlement was enclosed by the stone wall. Occupation continued until 600 BC. The occupation may only have been seasonal.
Limited pollen analysis at shaugh moor enclosure site 15 suggests scrub clearance and rough pasture at the time of the first occupation of the site. Pasture continued to dominate throughout the life of the site, though heathland was spreading. Peat formation within the site during the early first millennium bc suggests that the site was deserted. Phosphate analysis indicates high concentrations around the houses and a moderate concentration around the central post structure, all of which is probably from occupation debris rather than stock.

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

Enclosure visible containing one hut circle visible on the aerial photographs.

Griffith, F., 1988, Devon's Past. An Aerial View, 39 (Monograph). SDV64198.

Aerial view of the excavated site in 1978. Underneath the stone houses remains of their timber predecessors were found. Lack of hearths may suggest seasonal, summer occupation.

Fleming, A., 1988, The Dartmoor Reaves: Investigating Prehistoric Land Divisions, 103, 108-9, 111, 241, 246, figures 5, 67. (Monograph). SDV229071.

Bulge in wall could be style base. Phosphate levels suggest that animals were not normally kept in the enclosure. All the houses contained saddle querns, suggesting that some grain was brought to the site. Fleming suggests that the houses were built around 1600-1700 BC, the enclosure wall shortly afterwards. There was a refurbishment involving the addition of porches later on, with the main occupation over a period of 300-400 years and sporadic visitations thereafter, notably around 600 BC.

Quinnell, H., 1998, Prehistoric Pottery Survey (Report - Survey). SDV139039.

One sherd of Middle Iron Age pot, recovered during rescue excavation. Also recovered Middle Bronze Age pottery and other non-ceramics - quern. Now in City Museum, Plymouth.

Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R., 2019-2020, The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping Survey. Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (AI&M, formerly NMP) (Interpretation). SDV362982.

An earthwork bank approximately 2m wide is visible as an earthwork on aerial photographs of 1946 to 1978 defining an oval enclosure approximately 67m long and 56m wide.
The enclosure probably dates from the Bronze Age to Iron Age.
Four hut circles are clearly visible as vegetation covered earthworks arrayed in an arc near the northern end of the enclosure. A possible fifth hut circle is visible as an indistinct earthwork near the southern end of the enclosure, possibly cut by a later leat.
The site was excavated prior to destruction by the expansion of Shaugh Lake China Clay Works, and the excavated site is visible on aerial photographs of 1978.
The site was subsequently destroyed.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV138650Article in Serial: Wainwright, G. J. + Fleming, A. + Smith, K.. 1979. The Shaugh Moor Project: First Report. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society. 45. A4 Bound.
SDV139028Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1950. SX56SE42. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index. 23/05/1950.
SDV139029Photograph: Devon County Council Conservation Section. 1978. Shaugh Moor Photographs. Photograph (Paper).
SDV139030Article in Serial: Wainwright, G. J. + Smith, K.. 1980. The Shaugh Moor Project: Second Report - The Enclosure. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society. 46. A4 Bound. 65-122.
SDV139031Personal Comment: Timms, S.. 1981. Shaugh Moor enclosure. Not Applicable. 12/10/1981.
SDV139032Article in Serial: Wainwright, G. J. + Smith, K.. 1979. The South Dartmoor Project 1976-1979. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 37. Unknown. 132-135, figure.
SDV139039Report - Survey: Quinnell, H.. 1998. Prehistoric Pottery Survey. Unknown.
SDV145845Article in Serial: Balaam, N. D. + Smith, K. + Wainwright, G. J.. 1982. The Shaugh Moor Project: Fourth Report - Environment, Context and Conclusion. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society. 48. A4 Bound. 216-18, 268-9, Figure 8.
SDV150833Aerial Photograph: National Monuments Record. 1977. NMR SX5663. National Monuments Record Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). 1 (31/5/1978).
SDV177352Article in Serial: Silvester, R. J.. 1979. The Relationship of First Millennium Settlement to the Upland Areas of the South West. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 37. Paperback Volume. 177, figure 1.
SDV229071Monograph: Fleming, A.. 1988. The Dartmoor Reaves: Investigating Prehistoric Land Divisions. The Dartmoor Reaves: Investigating Prehistoric Land Divisions. Hardback Volume. 103, 108-9, 111, 241, 246, figures 5, 67..
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.
SDV342938Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946 - 1949. Royal Air Force Aerial Photographs. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Digital).
SDV352279Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/3G/TUD/UK/223. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). RAF/3G/TUD/UK/223 Vp2 5142-5143 12-JUL-1946. [Mapped feature: #123298 ]
SDV362982Interpretation: Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R.. 2019-2020. The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping Survey. Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (AI&M, formerly NMP). Historic England Research Report. Digital.
SDV363091Aerial Photograph: Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England. 1978. NMR 1247. NMR Aerial Photograph. NMR 1247/218-219 31-MAY-1978.
SDV64198Monograph: Griffith, F.. 1988. Devon's Past. An Aerial View. Devon's Past. An Aerial View. Paperback Volume. 39.

Associated Monuments

MDV14787Parent of: HUT CIRCLE in the Parish of Shaugh Prior (Monument)
MDV14782Parent of: Hut circle on Shaugh Moor, Shaugh Prior (Monument)
MDV14783Parent of: Hut circle on Shaugh Moor, Shaugh Prior (Monument)
MDV14784Parent of: Hut circle on Shaugh Moor, Shaugh Prior (Monument)
MDV14785Parent of: Hut circle on Shaugh Moor, Shaugh Prior (Monument)
MDV14786Parent of: Hut circle on Shaugh Moor, Shaugh Prior (Monument)
MDV48894Parent of: Pottery from enclosure on Shaugh Moor (Find Spot)
MDV126996Related to: Leats from Cholwich Town Waste to Lee Moor (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV8098 - The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping (formerly NMP) Survey, Area 2, Avon Valley to Plymouth (Ref: ACD2040)
  • EDV6800 - Shaugh Moor Project Pollen Analysis of Peat Deposits

Date Last Edited:Sep 25 2020 9:50AM