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HER Number:MDV3986
Name:Ringmoor Down Stone Row, Sheepstor

Summary

Ringmoor Down stone row of 530 metres long now mostly a single row with sections of a double row restored in 1911

Location

Grid Reference:SX 563 659
Map Sheet:SX56NE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishSheepstor
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishSHEEPSTOR

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX56NE60
  • National Record of the Historic Environment: 438671
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX56NE/8
  • Old SAM County Ref: 569
  • Old SAM Ref: 10596

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • STONE ALIGNMENT (Constructed, Early Neolithic to Early 20th Century - 4000 BC to 1932 AD (Between))

Full description

Brailsford, J. W., 1938, Bronze Age Stone Monuments of Dartmoor, 446-7 (Article in Serial). SDV304210.

Worth, R. H., 1941, Retaining Circles Associated with Stone Rows, Dartmoor, 234-5, Figure 5 (Article in Serial). SDV251083.

Circle surveyed before restoration in 1909 by Baring-Gould. Originally one standing stone, four fallen and six pits marking the position of former stones. Now ten standing standing stones, five new ones, some of which brought in from up to a quarter of a mile away.

Worth, R. H., 1946, The Stone Rows of Dartmoor. Part 1, 292, Row 16 (Article in Serial). SDV251172.

The row on Ringmoor is mostly single 530 metres long, but double at places, possibly once double throughout. There is a retaining circle at the south end. It terminates to the north in a fallen stone 0.22 metres in length and measuring 0.76 by 0.45 metres at the base. Five of the stones of the retaining circle were imported in an effort at restoration; the original condition of this circle may be seen on the plan on page 234 of the Transactions of Devon Archaeological Society Number 73.

Worth, R. H., 1948, 67th Report on Barrows (Article in Serial). SDV277749.

Worth amended his previous reports (1941 and 1946) in 1948 when he described the features as a retaining circle at the southern end and a small menhir at the northern end, and stated that the length of the row formerly given was incorrect.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1950/1979, SX56NE60 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV260547.

The reports (1941) and (1946) were amended by Worth in 1948 when he described the features as a retaining circle at the southern end and a small menhir at the northern end, and stated that the length of the row formerly given was incorrect (citing R. H. Worth, 10/12/1948).
(25/05/1950) Remains of a double row, very fragmentary and has suffered considerably from robbery. The fallen stone which is mentioned by Worth as terminating the northern end of the row could not be found. The stones of this row are larger than usual, the average height being 1.0 metres. Length of row 378 metres. Runs form SX56336580 to SX56416617.
(15/03/1979) On a west facing slope of Ringmoor Down at 293m OD. is a stone row at the higher southern end of which is a cairn surrounded by a restored circle of stones.
The row, double in part, extends 356m north from the cairn circle to one stone beyond Worth's small menhir. None of the slab or pillar-shaped stones exceed 1.0m in height, the majority being quite small and just protruding from the turf with many stones apparently missing. Consequently there is no observable regular spacing between the stones. The nearby longhouse settlements (SX 56 NE 118 and 121) and their associated field banks no doubt partly account for the robbing of the row.
Surveyed at 1:10 000 and at 1:000 for AO records.

National Monuments Record, 1978, NMR SX5666, 2, 148-152 (Aerial Photograph). SDV254609.

Photograph taken on 20th May 1977.

Emmett, D. D., 1979, Stone Rows: The Traditional View Reconsidered, 111 (Article in Serial). SDV251087.

Thom, A. + Thom, A. S., 1980/1981, Stone Monuments, 110-1 (Article in Serial). SDV260570.

The perimeter circle has been re-surveyed.

Balaam, N. D. + Smith, K. + Wainwright, G. J., 1982, Ringmoor Down, 254-5 (Article in Serial). SDV260549.

There is some doubt if the downslope end is original.

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

Recorded on aerial photograph.

Butler, J., 1994, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Three - The South-West, 142-3, Map 49, Figure 49.20 (Monograph). SDV137656.

Ringmoor Down stone row of 300 metres in length with a cairn at the southern end was largely re-erected in 1911. Before restoration very few stones were standing erect for the first 300 metres. The seven misaligned stones nearest the cairn had been displaced a few metres to the west and were re-erected in the position they were found. The original part of the row is the final 75 metres on the north side of the row. The alignment of some twenty slabs, mostly just showing above the turf, end at a tall slab 1.2 metres high re-erected with broad face in line, apparently the original termination. The slabs are set 1.75 metres apart along this section which if consistent along the whole length would give an original total of about 200 stones.

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

(16/02/2005) These features remain as described by the Ordnance Survey in 1979.
The stone circle is somewhat unusual for Dartmoor and may be an affectation those carrying out the reconstruction.

Various, 2018-2020, PALs Condition Recording forms, UPRM-9 (Worksheet). SDV362781.

(20/05/2019) Condition assessed as ?very good by volunteer recorders, although damage by livestock and possible environmental erosion noted; particularly stones at the northern end of row. Also poor condition where row and field boundary ditch intersect.

Various, 2018-2020, PALs Condition Recording photographs (Photograph). SDV363073.

Alignment photographed in May 2019.

Ordnance Survey, 2021, MasterMap 2021 (Cartographic). SDV364015.

'Stone Row' shown on modern mapping.

Historic England, 2021, National Heritage List for England, 102246 (National Heritage List for England). SDV364016.

The Ringmoor Down alignment has a double row of stones 337 metres in length orientated north-east/south-west, with a cairn and retaining kerb at the south-western end and an orthostat 1.10 metres in height at the northern end. It runs close to the 290 metres contour and has twenty- seven standing stones ranging from 0.15 metres to 1.25 metres in height. Robbing has reduced the number of stones, but opposing pairs are on average 1.4 metres apart.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV137656Monograph: Butler, J.. 1994. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Three - The South-West. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Three - The South-West. Three. Paperback Volume. 142-3, Map 49, Figure 49.20.
SDV251083Article in Serial: Worth, R. H.. 1941. Retaining Circles Associated with Stone Rows, Dartmoor. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 73. 234-5, Figure 5.
SDV251087Article in Serial: Emmett, D. D.. 1979. Stone Rows: The Traditional View Reconsidered. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 37. Paperback Volume. 111.
SDV251172Article in Serial: Worth, R. H.. 1946. The Stone Rows of Dartmoor. Part 1. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 78. A5 Hardback. 292, Row 16.
SDV254609Aerial Photograph: National Monuments Record. 1978. NMR SX5666. National Monuments Record Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). 2, 148-152.
SDV260547Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1950/1979. SX56NE60. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV260549Article in Serial: Balaam, N. D. + Smith, K. + Wainwright, G. J.. 1982. Ringmoor Down. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society. 48. 254-5.
SDV260570Article in Serial: Thom, A. + Thom, A. S.. 1980/1981. Stone Monuments. British Archaeological Reports. 81. Unknown. 110-1.
SDV277749Article in Serial: Worth, R. H.. 1948. 67th Report on Barrows. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 80. Paperback Volume.
SDV304210Article in Serial: Brailsford, J. W.. 1938. Bronze Age Stone Monuments of Dartmoor. Antiquity. 12, Issue 48. Digital. 446-7.
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.
SDV362781Worksheet: Various. 2018-2020. PALs Condition Recording forms. PALs Condition Assessment Project Forms. Digital. UPRM-9.
SDV363073Photograph: Various. 2018-2020. PALs Condition Recording photographs. PALs Condition Assessment Project Forms. Digital.
SDV364015Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2021. MasterMap 2021. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #90509 ]
SDV364016National Heritage List for England: Historic England. 2021. National Heritage List for England. Digital. 102246.

Associated Monuments

MDV3983Related to: Brisworthy Stone Circle, Sheepstor (Monument)
MDV3987Related to: Cairn at the southern end of Ringmoor Down stone row, Sheepstor (Monument)
MDV3360Related to: Cairn west of Legis Lake, Sheepstor (Monument)
MDV4030Related to: Cairn with cist west of Legis Lake, Sheepstor (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV7443 - Condition survey of archaeological sites in Ringmoor Training Area
  • EDV7569 - Condition survey of Ringmoor Down training area
  • EDV8227 - Ringmoor Training Area: Monument Baseline Condition Survey

Date Last Edited:Jun 29 2021 11:30AM