MDE11675 - Post-medieval lime kilns at Countisbury Cove (Monument)


The remains of a lime kiln with an open combustion chamber and some sections of walling were noted during field investigation and on historic mapping.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

Site of 'Limekiln' shown on the Ordnanace Survey 25 inch 1st edition map as a small circular feature between two long narrow rectangular features. The southern feature is approximately 30 metres long by 6 metres wide and the northern feature is approximately 44 metres long by 4 metres wide with a bend at the western end. [1] The site corresponding with these features is centred at SS 7647 5023. It lies some 7 metres above the pebble beach of Countisbury Cove, on an eroding cliff face. Some of the site has been lost due to this erosion and is consequently inaccessible. However, a general description is possible from the beach. The remains of possibly two kilns are visible as a length of collapsing masonry built out of the cliff face. Wooden stays and supports are visible within the kilns. Associated with the kilns are various sections of walling and masonry. These are connected with access to the site and presumably the handling of materials. To the east of the kilns a length of walling appears to have formerly given access to the kilns from the beach. This walling defines the north side of a trackway, but is now fragmented by cliff collapse. All the masonry is a mixture of beach pebbles or boulders and stone from the coastal cliffs. It is largely of uncoursed construction and is bonded with a lime mortar. Further walling, separate from the main complex, is visible to the west (MDE21496) and may mark the site of another kiln. Access to the site from the landward side was a well constructed track cut into the cliff face and revetted in stone. It has a steady gradient and a single zigzag which takes it to Rodney's (MDE21947). From there it follows the existing drive from Rodney's through Kipscombe Enclosure. The occupier of Rodney's states that the cottage was originally constructed as a lime burner's dwelling. [2] One kiln, with an open combustion chamber and some sections of walling, remains. [3] Site of 'Old Limekiln' shown on the Ordnance Survey 25 inch 1905 map as a circular feature 4.5 metres in diameter between two features of parallel lines. [4] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [5]

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500. 1889, Devon 3(51).
  • <2> Unpublished document: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. Field Investigators Comment. R Wilson-North, 30 November 1993.
  • <3> Report: Holley, S.. 1997. An Investigation of Limekilns on Exmoor for the Purposes of Conservation. Site 007.
  • <4> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1902-1907. County Series, 2nd Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500. 1905.
  • <5> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 925997, Extant 25 January 2022.

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 51177
  • Devon SMR: SS75SE/3
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE21495
  • Local List Status (Require info)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 75 SE8
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 925997
  • Shoreline Management Plan 2 (0-20)



Grid reference Centred SS 7647 5023 (49m by 24m) Historic mapping
Map sheet SS75SE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (2)

Related Events/Activities (2)

Record last edited

Jan 25 2022 1:19PM


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