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HER Number:MDV24808
Name:Dry Lake openwork, Dartmoor Forest


Openwork with extensive spoilheaps visible extending to SX63506705, running north-south either side of Dry Lake.


Grid Reference:SX 635 668
Map Sheet:SX66NW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishDartmoor Forest
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishLYDFORD

Protected Status

  • SHINE: Structural and earthwork remains of Medieval or later tin streamworks on the River Erme and its tributaries, Blacklane Brook, Dry Lake and Red Lake, as well as blowing houses and tinners buildings and possible prehistoric enclosures at Wollake

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX66NW/131
  • SHINE Candidate (Yes)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • OPEN CUT (Early Medieval to Post Medieval - 1066 AD to 1750 AD (Between))

Full description

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/CPE/UK/1890, 4278 (Aerial Photograph). SDV169268.

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

Openwork with extensive spoilheaps visible extending to SX63506705. Depicted on map overlay.

GetMapping, 1999 - 2000, Dartmoor 1999-2000 1:1250 Aerial Photography (digital) (Aerial Photograph). SDV345751.

Stream working visible on the aerial photograph.

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

Two areas of streamwork shown on survey.

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

Approximately 6 hectares of tin streamworks following the course of Upper Dry Lake, an eastern tributary of the River Erme, between 385 metres and 450 metres above OD. The limit of the tinwork’s main working area is well defined by a scarp of between 1 metre and 4 metres deep running around most of the perimeter. The streamwork is between 85 metres and 32 metres wide and over 1 kilometre long. The interior working area contains the usual evidence of low linear spoil heaps, pits and channels, some of which have been reinforced by low stone revetments. The interior is also strewn with some very large granite boulders which the tinners were forced to work around and are, therefore, in situ. A large portion of the upper parts of the working are disguised by bog and rushes but a narrow channel and further workings are visible extending north. This tinwork has not been dated but , where available, documentation for tinworks elsewhere on Dartmoor would suggest a likely operational date between the 12th and 17th centuries. Three small ruined buildings survive within the confines of the tinwork (MDV116604; 116601; 116603).

Sources / Further Reading

SDV169268Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/CPE/UK/1890. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). 4278.
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.
SDV345751Aerial Photograph: GetMapping. 1999 - 2000. Dartmoor 1999-2000 1:1250 Aerial Photography (digital). Digital.
SDV361913Cartographic: Newman, P.. 2018. Erme Valley Survey data (GIS and Excel spreadsheet). GIS ShapeFile. Digital. [Mapped feature: #122466 ]

Associated Monuments

MDV24810Related to: Line of trial pits north-east of Dry Lake, Dartmoor Forest (Monument)
MDV24809Related to: Openwork north of Middle Mire (Monument)
MDV116602Related to: Tinners' building 200 metres south-east of Dry Lake Ford, Lydford (Building)
MDV116604Related to: Tinners' building at Dry Lake Ford (Building)
MDV116601Related to: Tinners' building at Dry Lake, Lydford (Building)
MDV116603Related to: Tinners' building at Middle Mire, Lydford (Building)
MDV116605Related to: Tinners' building at Red Lake, Lydford (Building)
MDV126702Related to: Tinners building east of Dry Lake (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV8082 - Survey of the Upper Erme Valley

Date Last Edited:Apr 21 2020 3:33PM