MDE12508 - Medieval or post-medieval farmstead northeast of Lyshwell Farm (Monument)


A deserted farmstead is visible as earthworks comprising an enclosure and the remains of three buildings. It has been suggested that this may be the original location of South Lyshwell Farmstead.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

Centred at 8377 3068 some 120 metres northeast of Lyshwell Farm are the earthworks of a deserted farmstead. It consists of a nearly square enclosure measuring 46.5 metres by 40 metres, defined by bank of 0.4 metres high with an external ditch. This enclosure lies inside another enclosure defined by a very prominent bank (0.8 metres high) which appears to be a later extension or reworking of the farmstead. Within the enclosure are the remains of three buildings: the domestic building, a shippon and an outbuilding. The domestic building lies at the southwest corner of the enclosure and consists of a two celled structure measuring 13 metres by 6.5 metres defined by earth and stone banks 0.3 metres high. The western cell is raised 0.3 metres above the eastern and contains more stonework which might indicate a stone built chimney in the gable end. The west end of the building is poorly defined having been infilled with stone from modern field clearance and robbed at the eastern gable, where robbing trenches are visible following the wall lines. This room is reached by two opposed doorways in the north and south walls, now marked by breaks in the defining banks. The second building lies at the northeast corner of the enclosure and is a substantial structure 24 metres long and 6 metres wide. Various slight level changes within it may mark internal divisions. The eastern gable wall has been disturbed and robbing trenches are visible. The building is best interpreted as a shippon. A third building abuts the western enclosure bank. It consists of a rectangular structure measuring 7.5 metres by 4 metres and is probably an outbuilding. A number of banks subdivide the enclosure and create an orderly arrangement, suggesting a possible informal courtyard plan. Surveyed at 1;500 scale. Full level 3 report and landscape analysis. [1-3] The earthwork remains of a deserted farmstead of probable post-medieval date can be seen on aerial photographs, approximately 100 metres to the northeast of Lyshwell Farm at circa SS 8375 3068. The earthworks have been transcribed from the aerial photographs available to the Exmoor National Mapping Programme survey at a scale of 1:2500. Due to the location of the deserted farmstead to the south of a belt of trees, the site was in shade on many of the photographs available to the survey. Nonetheless, much of the enclosure earthwork has been transcribed. Unfortunately the visibility of internal structures was limited. [4-8] These sites are shown very clearly on the CUC aerial photograph. [6] To north of Lyshwell are traces of ruined buildings shown as small enclosures on Ordnance Survey, and also unmarked in next field to east at SS 838 308. On Moorhouse Ridge, an abandoned field system. There are three enclosures as well as the field system mentioned by Balkwill. The southern enclosure at SS 8376 3067, contains apparent walls (forming yards) and two buildings, one possibly a longhouse. At SS 8369 3075, another enclosure with substantial walls contains possible buildings, and a third enclosure at SS 8375 3082 contains one possible building, but may be principally a stock fold as a droveway runs eastwards to the ground beyond the field system. [9] All three sites show on 1946 RAF aerial photograph. [4,11] SS 8375 3068. DMS 'South Lyshwell'. The site is a complex of buildings within a yard, with only mounds, ridges and depressions remaining. There are stone debris on one of the mounds. A tractor track runs through the site. May be original site of South Lyshwell, relocated between 1706 and 1842 (the present house is appproximately mid 19th Century). [12] Lyshwell may be recorded as early as 1318. [15] All features show as earthworks on the aerial photograph. Molland Tithe Map of 1841 shows South Lyshwell farm with buildings on the same site as the existing farm [16]. None of the three enclosures described by Griffith are marked on the tithe map, but the field in which her third enclosure lies is called North Lyshwell (in separate occupancy). [17] Site not recorded by McDonnell in his 1980 exmoor aerial photographic survey. [18] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [19]

Sources/Archives (19)

  • <1> Report: Wilson-North, R.. 1996. Lyshwell and Shircombe: Deserted Farmsteads and Field Systems . RCHME.
  • <2> Technical drawing: Wilson-North, R.. 1995. Lyshwell 1/ink survey . 1:500. Permatrace. Pen and Ink.
  • <3> Unpublished document: Wilson-North, R.. Various. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 20 July 1995.
  • <4> Aerial photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946 -1948. Vertical Aerial Photography. 106G/UK/1420 (F20) 3457-8 (15 April 1946).
  • <5> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR RAF 540/860 (F20) 4123-4 (2 September 1952).
  • <6> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Oblique Aerial Photograph. CUULM CBO1-3 (7 September 1976).
  • <7> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Oblique Aerial Photograph. NMR SS/8330/28-31 23426/05-8 (1 March 2004).
  • <8>XY Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 83 SW. MD002197. [Mapped feature: #38267 ]
  • <9> Archive: Devon County Council. Various. Devon SMR / HER records / parish files - Exmoor records. Balkwill.
  • <10> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. HSL/UK/71/178/RUN 83/9312 (8 September 1971) County Hall Taunton Planning Dept.
  • <11> Archive: Devon County Council. Various. Devon SMR / HER records / parish files - Exmoor records. Worksheet, Site Visit, S Timms, 7 July 1982.
  • <12> Report: Bannister, N.R. and Bannister, D.E.. 1992. Historic landscape survey of the Molland Estate, Nr South Molton, Devon. 27, 28, 156 (survey), App III site 2, 29 May 1992.
  • <13> Photograph: 1991. Ground Photograph of Lyshwell Deserted Settlement from North.
  • <14> Cartographic materials: Ordnance Survey. 1906. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. 16SW.
  • <15> Monograph: Gover, J.E.B., Mawer, A. and Stenton, F.M.. 1931. The Place-Names of Devon: Part One. VIII. P. 343.
  • <16> Map: 1841. Molland Tithe Map and Apportionment. Land parcels 7-24.
  • <17> Monograph: Griffith, F. M.. 1988. Devon's Past: An Aerial View. 75.
  • <18> Unpublished document: McDonnell, R.. 1980. Gazetteer of Sites in the Exmoor National Park Identified through Aerial Photography. N/A.
  • <19> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1033249, Extant 2 February 2022.

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 1198
  • Devon SMR: SS83SW/1
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE20087
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO473
  • Local List Status (Unassessed)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 83 SW32
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1033249



Grid reference Centred SS 8375 3068 (78m by 69m)
Map sheet SS83SW

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (2)

Related Articles (1)

Record last edited

Feb 2 2022 1:54PM


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