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HER Number:MDV52539
Name:Decoy Brake Rifle Range

Summary

Rifle range shown on late 19th century map was in use until after World War II, when it was used by many units including some from the United States. It has been largely levelled by 1960, although two earthwork banks of firing points are visible on digital images derived from lidar data captured between 1998 and 2017.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 861 699
Map Sheet:SX86NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishNewton Abbot
DistrictTeignbridge
Ecclesiastical ParishWOLBOROUGH

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • National Record of the Historic Environment: 1413100
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX86NE/146

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • RIFLE RANGE (XIX to World War II - 1801 AD to 1945 AD (Between))

Full description

Ordnance Survey, 1880-1899, First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map (Cartographic). SDV336179.

'Rifle Range' shown in Decoy Brake, including targets and butts at south-west end and '600 Yards' at north-east end.


Ordnance Survey, 1930 - 1939, Fourth Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map (Cartographic). SDV336668.

The earthworks partly correspond with features on this map.


Ordnance Survey, 1938, 109SE. Revision of 1932/1933 with additions in 1938. Provisional Edition (Cartographic). SDV336785.

'Rifle Range' marked.


Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/3G/TUD/UK/223, RAF/3G/TUD/UK/223 Vp1 5013-14 12-JUL-1946 (Aerial Photograph). SDV352279.

Earthworks of banks and a ditch are visible.


Ordnance Survey, 1953 - 1969, Ordnance Survey Six Inch Map (Cartographic). SDV340358.

'Rifle Range (Dis)' shown.


Royal Air Force, 1960, RAF/58/3510, RAF/58/3510 F22 224 22-APR-1960 (Aerial Photograph). SDV352221.

Woodland in this area has been partly cleared and the rifle range largely levelled.


Jury, R., 1996, Rifle Range at Magazine Lane (Worksheet). SDV313391.

Site visit on 7th January 1996. Range used by volunteers, then territorial army. Range in use until 1947. Used duringWorld War II by many units including United States troops. Magazine was sited at end of Magazine Lane.


Environment Agency, 1998-2017, LiDAR DTM data (1m resolution) EA: South Devon Coast to Dartmoor, LIDAR SX8669 Environment Agency DTM 01-JAN-1998 to 31-MAY-2017 (Cartographic). SDV361470.

Two earthwork banks are visible.


Reed, S. J. + Turton, S. D., 2001, Archaeological Assessment of Bovey Basin Mineral Site. Part 1 Overview, 29; Figure 8, 1. (Report - Assessment). SDV336226.


Dean, R., 2016, Land at Wolborough Barton, Newton Abbot (Report - Geophysical Survey). SDV359853.

This report presents the results of an archaeological magnetometer survey at the above site. One hundred and five magnetic anomaly groups were mapped as representing possible archaeological deposits or structures.

Anomaly group 28 probably represent a deposit of rubble, possibly mixed with fired bricks,
that may be associated with the former rifle butts and a nineteenth century rifle range that continued in use until after World War 2.


Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R., 2018-2019, The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping Survey. Area 1, Haldon Ridge to Dart Valley (Interpretation). SDV361305.

A rifle range is first shown in this location on the First Edition Ordnance Survey map of the late 19th century. It extends to a length of circa 560m, is northeast to southwest aligned, with earthworks and structures shown and labelled as ‘Targets’ and ‘Butts’ to the southwest. Two additional earthworks of possible firing points are shown on the Ordnance Survey Fourth Edition map. The firing range is visible as a linear area of cleared ground on aerial photographs taken in 1946. Three of the earthworks visible on these aerial photographs correspond with features shown on the Fourth Edition map, including the ‘Targets and ‘Butts’ and one of the firing points. Additional earthwork features, including two extra firing points and a ziz-zag shaped bank with corresponding ditch of a possible slit trench are not shown on historic maps and are interpreted as modifications made during its use in the Second World War. Woodland in this area has been cleared and the rifle range largely levelled on aerial photographs taken in 1960, although two of the three firing points are visible as earthworks on digital images derived from lidar data captured between 1998 and 2017.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV313391Worksheet: Jury, R.. 1996. Rifle Range at Magazine Lane. Defence of Britain Project. Worksheet + Digital.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital). [Mapped feature: #94353 ]
SDV336226Report - Assessment: Reed, S. J. + Turton, S. D.. 2001. Archaeological Assessment of Bovey Basin Mineral Site. Part 1 Overview. Exeter Archaeology Report. 01.80. A4 Stapled + Digital. 29; Figure 8, 1..
SDV336668Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1930 - 1939. Fourth Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Fourth Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV336785Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1938. 109SE. Revision of 1932/1933 with additions in 1938. Provisional Edition. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 6 inch Map. Map (Paper).
SDV340358Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1953 - 1969. Ordnance Survey Six Inch Map. National Grid A edition imperial. Map (Digital).
SDV352221Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1960. RAF/58/3510. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). RAF/58/3510 F22 224 22-APR-1960.
SDV352279Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/3G/TUD/UK/223. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). RAF/3G/TUD/UK/223 Vp1 5013-14 12-JUL-1946.
SDV359853Report - Geophysical Survey: Dean, R.. 2016. Land at Wolborough Barton, Newton Abbot. Substrata. 1508WOL-R-1. Digital.
SDV361305Interpretation: Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R.. 2018-2019. The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping Survey. Area 1, Haldon Ridge to Dart Valley. Historic England Research Report. Digital.
Linked documents:1
SDV361470Cartographic: Environment Agency. 1998-2017. LiDAR DTM data (1m resolution) EA: South Devon Coast to Dartmoor. Environment Agency LiDAR data. Digital. LIDAR SX8669 Environment Agency DTM 01-JAN-1998 to 31-MAY-2017.

Associated Monuments

MDV52520Parent of: Rifle Butts at Decoy Brake Rifle Range (Monument)
MDV38608Related to: Wolborough Brake Powder Magazine (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4912 - Archaeological Assessment of Bovey Basin Mineral Site
  • EDV7116 - Geophysical Survey, Land at Wolborough Barton, Newton Abbot (Ref: 1508WOL-R-1)
  • EDV7515 - The South Devon Coast to Dartmoor Aerial Investigation and Mapping (formerly NMP) Survey (Ref: ACD1748)

Date Last Edited:Feb 19 2019 1:44PM