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HER Number:MDV25041
Name:Streamworking along the upper Plym Valley and its tributaries

Summary

Remains of extensive Medieval and later streamworking situated within the upper Plym Valley and its tributaries. Archaeological field surveys in 1994 and 2005 found the earthworks to be well preserved, bounded by steep sharply defined cliffs up to four metres in height. Other features include parallel spoilheaps and water channels. The site was assessed in 1997, but was not scheduled.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 592 663
Map Sheet:SX56NE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishDartmoor Forest
Civil ParishMeavy
Civil ParishShaugh Prior
Civil ParishSheepstor
DistrictSouth Hams
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishLYDFORD
Ecclesiastical ParishMEAVY
Ecclesiastical ParishSHAUGH PRIOR
Ecclesiastical ParishSHEEPSTOR

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX66NW84
  • National Record of the Historic Environment: 1063602
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX66NE/382
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX66NE/459
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX66NE/462
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX66NW/105
  • Old SAM County Ref: SX66NE/421

Monument Type(s) and Dates

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

Full description

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/CPE/UK/1890, 4282 (Aerial Photograph). SDV169268.

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

Massive streamwork with extensive spoilheaps on both sides of Lancombe Brook between SX 61406625 and SX 60256720 visible on 1946 aerial photograph. The streamwork divides at SX 61406625 and extends to SX 61406595 and SX 61626623.

Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England, 1993-1998, Dartmoor Royal Forest Project (Report - Survey). SDV346608.

(11/11/1994) Centred SX 613685. Approximately 9.0 hectares of streamworking remains on the upper reaches of the River Plym and its tributaries within Dartmoor Forest Parish. The well preserved workings are bounded by steep sharply defined cliffs which are most noticeable on the Plym itself between SX 61106848 and SX 60736816 near the site of the later Wheal Katherine Mine where they reach a height of 4.0m. Adjacent to the river are broad areas displaying the characteristic parallel spoil heaps and former water channels associated with streamworking. The feeder streams on the higher reaches of the river are generally marked by boggy depressions with the occasional protruding spoil heap while the lowest right bank tributary in the investigated area, Crane Lake, has been worked as extensively as the river itself. The workings between SX 60596872 and SX 60766824 on this stream formed the basis of the sett for Wheal Katherine.
The fragmentary remains of two leats formerly supplying the workings on the Plym are visible on the unworked section of floodplain above the right bank of the river.
There are no identifiable tinners buildings directly associated with the streamworking activity.
In addition to the above 3.5km of the right bank of the Plym including two tributaries between Crane Lake and Meavy Pool surveyed during Eylesbarrow Project.
Approximately 30 hectares of workings lie adjacent to the river, concentrating on the slower moving sections at the confluence with the Drizzlecombe Brook and at Meavy Pool. A further 6.2 hectares are contained by a Y-shaped working at Evil Combe and 17 hectares flank the Drizzlecombe Brook for the entirety of its length. At Meavy Pool the Plym workings are joined by an openwork that extends from further streamworks on the Sheepstor Brook (Monument HOB UID 1313022). A solitary stamping mill (Monument HOB UID 441600) lies adjacent to the tinners cliff immediately beneath Lower Hartor Tor.

Gerrard, S., 1993-2010, Monument Protection Programme Alternative Action Report (Report - non-specific). SDV145710.

Report dated 01/01/1997 - 31/03/1997. Site visited and assessed for scheduling. It was not scheduled as it was not considered to be of national importance.

Cranstone, D. + Hedley, I., 1995, Monuments Protection Programme: The Tin Industry Step 3 Site Assessments, Devon 43 (Report - non-specific). SDV357946.

Langcombe Brook streamworks form part of this streamwork complex.

Fletcher, M. + Newman, P. + Probert, S., 1999, Drizzlecombe, Eylesbarrow, Ditsworthy and Hartor areas in the Plym Valley, West Devon (Report - Survey). SDV346268.

Newman, P., 1999, Eylesbarrow (Ailsborough) Tin Mine (Report - Survey). SDV352201.

Probert, S. A. J. + Fletcher, M. J., 2002, Plym Valley survey (Report - Survey). SDV350782.

Newman, P. + Probert, S., 2005, Ringmoor Training Area: Monument Baseline Condition Survey (Report - Survey). SDV363484.

(18/03/2005) In addition to the streamworking remains recorded by the Royal Commission in 1994 are 12 hectares of workings on Legis Lake in a continuous band from its sources to its confluence with the Plym. The higher parts of the workings are largely marsh-filled and only visible as a slight scarp around the perimeter. The lower, southern, end of the workings, near the Plym, are characterised by large linear spoilheaps interspersed with former water channels all contained by massive scarps. There are no buildings associated with the Legis Lake workings.

Probert, S. A. J., 2010, A Condition Survey of the Archaeological Sites of Ringmoor, Dartmoor Training Area (Report - Survey). SDV360517.

Newman, P., 2018, Archaeological Sites within Ringmoor Training Area, Dartmoor National Park, Devon: A condition survey on behalf of Defence Infrastructure Organisation (Report - Survey). SDV361636.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV145710Report - non-specific: Gerrard, S.. 1993-2010. Monument Protection Programme Alternative Action Report. English Heritage. Unknown.
SDV169268Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/CPE/UK/1890. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). 4282.
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.
SDV346268Report - Survey: Fletcher, M. + Newman, P. + Probert, S.. 1999. Drizzlecombe, Eylesbarrow, Ditsworthy and Hartor areas in the Plym Valley, West Devon. Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England Report. A4 Comb Bound.
SDV346608Report - Survey: Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England. 1993-1998. Dartmoor Royal Forest Project. Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England Field/Recording In. Unknown.
SDV350782Report - Survey: Probert, S. A. J. + Fletcher, M. J.. 2002. Plym Valley survey. English Heritage Archaeological Investigation Report. Unknown.
SDV352201Report - Survey: Newman, P.. 1999. Eylesbarrow (Ailsborough) Tin Mine. English Heritage Survey Report. A4 Spiral Bound.
SDV357946Report - non-specific: Cranstone, D. + Hedley, I.. 1995. Monuments Protection Programme: The Tin Industry Step 3 Site Assessments. Monument Protection Programme. Foolscap. Devon 43.
SDV360517Report - Survey: Probert, S. A. J.. 2010. A Condition Survey of the Archaeological Sites of Ringmoor, Dartmoor Training Area. A4 Comb Bound.
SDV361636Report - Survey: Newman, P.. 2018. Archaeological Sites within Ringmoor Training Area, Dartmoor National Park, Devon: A condition survey on behalf of Defence Infrastructure Organisation. South-West Landscape Investigations. A4 Comb Bound.

Associated Monuments

MDV28306Parent of: Openwork at Langcombe Brook (Monument)
MDV131188Parent of: Structure in streamworking west of Deadman's Bottom (Monument)
MDV24833Related to: Openwork on western side of Wheal Katherine Tin Mine (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV8148 - The Upper Plym Valley: The Management of an Historic Landscape
  • EDV4966 - Survey of Drizzlecombe, Eylesbarrow, Ditsworthy and Hartor. The Eylesbarrow archaeological landscape
  • EDV6239 - Eylesbarrow (Ailsborough) Tin Mine
  • EDV7443 - Condition survey of archaeological sites in Ringmoor Training Area
  • EDV7569 - Condition survey of Ringmoor Down training area
  • EDV8155 - Plym Valley Survey: EH Project (Feb 2001 - Dec 2002)
  • EDV8227 - Ringmoor Training Area: Monument Baseline Condition Survey
  • EDV8409 - Dartmoor Royal Forest Project

Date Last Edited:Aug 27 2021 4:04PM