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HER Number:MDV55388
Name:Medieval Tenement in North Street, Totnes


Site of a medieval tenement excavated in North Street in Totnes.


Grid Reference:SX 801 605
Map Sheet:SX86SW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishTotnes
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishTOTNES

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX86SW/286

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • TENEMENT (XI to Post Medieval - 1001 AD to 1750 AD (Between))

Full description

Stead, P. M., 1995, Archaeological Evaluation at Church Close, Totnes, 1-4 (Report - Evaluation). SDV343224.

Excavation prior to the development of the playground of the former school revealed a buried cultivation soil in Trench 1 at a depth of 0.74 metres It produced a single sherd of early medieval coarseware dating from 11th/12th century. Trench 2, against the eastern boundary wall of the site, revealed the truncated remains of a clay bonded wall lying directly beneath the present boundary wall and on the same alignment. Seven sherds of a North Devon ware cup dating from 1480-1560 were recovered. The backfill was sealed by a well-laid cobbled surface which would have been in use when the wall was standing. An earlier deposit, cut by the wall, produced a single sherd of medieval micaceous roof tile, post-1250. Trench 4, sited against the northern boundary wall revealed a buried cultivation soil. A clay-bonded wall was set directly onto this soil. No facework was visible, but its alignment was probably north to south. Beneath the wall was a large pit, 1.34 metres deep with a diameter in excess of 2 metres. Pot from its fills indicates a 14th/15th century date for its disuse. The pit was sealed by a metalled surface dated by pot to the early 16th century. Later activity consisted of a further pit containing several sherds of late 16th century imported pot, including Beavers Sgraffito ware from northern France and Raeren German imports. Cutting the fills of this pit was the construction cut for the present boundary wall. The cultivation soil evidence in Trenches 1 and 4, which has not been seen elsewhere in Totnes, probably represents an early medieval tenement. As both the lower surface in Trench 1 and the wall in Trench 4 are set directly onto the cultivation soil, they are probably contemporary features and may represent medieval encroachment towards the rampart and town wall.

Keystone Historic Buildings Consultants, 1996, Assessment of Civic Centre Area, Totnes (Report - Assessment). SDV340328.

Nenk, B. S. + Haith, C. + Bradley, J., 1997, Medieval Britain and Ireland in 1996, 250-251 (Article in Serial). SDV361739.

Summary of partial excavation carried out by Exeter archaeology.

Green, T., 2008, North Gate Lodge, Castle Street, Totnes: Results of an Archaeological Desk-Based Study, 30-1 (Report - Assessment). SDV342884.

Ordnance Survey, 2013, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV350786.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV340328Report - Assessment: Keystone Historic Buildings Consultants. 1996. Assessment of Civic Centre Area, Totnes. Keystone Historic Buildings Consultants Report. K477. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV342884Report - Assessment: Green, T.. 2008. North Gate Lodge, Castle Street, Totnes: Results of an Archaeological Desk-Based Study. Southwest Archaeology Report. 060915. A4 Stapled + Digital. 30-1.
SDV343224Report - Evaluation: Stead, P. M.. 1995. Archaeological Evaluation at Church Close, Totnes. Exeter Archaeology Report. 95.36. A4 stapled + Digital. 1-4.
SDV350786Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #95242 ]
SDV361739Article in Serial: Nenk, B. S. + Haith, C. + Bradley, J.. 1997. Medieval Britain and Ireland in 1996. Medieval Archaeology. 41. Unknown. 250-251.

Associated Monuments: none recorded

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4545 - Assessment of Northgate Lodge, Castle Street, Totnes
  • EDV6637 - Coin hoard discovered during building works, 23-25 High Street, Totnes

Date Last Edited:Sep 6 2018 11:02AM