Principal Archaeological Landscape: Burcombe mining complex (24)

Authority Exmoor National Park Authority
Date assigned 01 January 2011
Date last amended
Date revoked
Previously known as Blue Gate and Roman Lode Location Burcombe PAL is located on the south side of the river Barle, to the south west of Simonsbath with Blue Gate at its southern end. It is dominated by Dry Bridge Combe and Burcombe. Description of Archaeology There is evidence of mineral exploitation dating from the early Bronze Age to the early 20th century. The most obvious topographic feature is Roman Lode, a 600m long openwork which despite its name is undated but probably reflects mineral extraction over millennia. A triangular area of pits at the east end of this feature was investigated under the Exmoor Iron Project in the early 2000’s. Detailed results of this work are currently unpublished. The most extensive mining operations were carried out in the 19th century in the area to the south of Cornham Ford. A second area is focused on Deer Park, to the north east of Blue Gate. This area in particular has exceptionally well preserved field remains supported by detailed cartographic and documentary evidence. Principal significance This PAL is significant due to the presence of Roman Lode, the largest openwork on Exmoor. In addition, the remains at Blue Gate are exceptionally well preserved. The PAL exhibits a wide chronological range for mineral exploitation, from the Bronze Age until the early 20th century.

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Grid reference Centred SS 7563 3820 (1819m by 1375m)
Map sheet SS73NE

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