MDE1280 - The Long Stone, Challacombe Common (Monument)


A prehistoric standing stone, known as the Long Stone, stands on a long east to west ridge overlooking the head of a west facing combe. It is 3 metres high.

Please read the Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record .

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

A standing stone known as the Longstone is 9 feet high, 2 feet 2 inches wide and 7 inches thick. 'Long Stone Barrow' is located to the southeast, and further eastwards is 'Wood Barrow'. The site is located on a long east-west ridge, one of the highest areas of Exmoor. [1] (SS 7051 4307) Long Stone (NR). [3] No change; classified as Bronze Age by Grinsell [5]. Published survey 1:2500 correct. [5] The menhir is weathering badly, and also being worn away by sheep rubbing against it in the summer time. [7] The stone is shown on Donn's Map of 1765 but incorrectly positioned on the Somerset side of the County Boundary. [8] The monument is Scheduled: Devon 204, entitled 'Chapman Longstone'. [9] SS 7051 4307 Longstone. A Standing Stone situated on a flat topped ridge of rough grassland and heather at about 465 metres Ordnance Datum. It is a tall slatey slab, 3 metres high, 1.2 metres wide and 0.25 metres thick at its base. It is orientated northeast/southwest, and an Ordnance Survey bench mark has been cut on its southeast side. There is a 'trigger' stone 0.7 metres high, 0.5 metres high and 0.15 metres thick, set against its southeast side. It stands in an erosion hollow 3 metres in diameter and 0.3 metres maximum depth. [10] SS 7051443072. `Long Stone' a prehistoric standing stone as described by [10]. Published Surveyed 1:2500 correct. [11] The Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment of 2009 gave the site a survival score of 4. [16] A watercolour image of the Long Stone was produced by Leo Davey for the Exmoor Moorland Landscapes Partnership Scheme. [17] The site was surveyed in March 2015 as part of the 2015 Exmoor Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment. It was given a survival score of 4. [18] The site was survered as part of the Exmoor Standing Stone Condition Survey 2017-2018. The main upright, measuring: 2.6 x 0.8 x 0.2m, is propped up by a substantial trigger stone, measuring: 0.6 x 0.12 x 0.4m. The Stone’s relationship to the surrounding barrows and landscape is likely significant, especially upon this particularly exposed ridge. The monuments condition is considered to be “good”, since the last survey in 2015. The main threat continues to be livestock which have been rubbing against the stone and have created a very significant erosion hollow at the base. While both stones are very well-set, there is a concern that if this continues the stone may fall, especially if the trigger stone is disturbed. [19-20] The site was photographed by the RCHME in 1999. [21] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [22]

Sources/Archives (22)

  • <1> Article in serial: Chanter, J.F. and Worth, R.H.. 1905. The Rude Stone Monuments of Exmoor and its Borders. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 37. I. P.387, 391, Plate 1.
  • <2> Map: Ordnance Survey. County Series; 2nd Edition (1st Revision) 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
  • <3> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1962. 6 Inch Map: 1962. 1:10560.
  • <4> Article in serial: Worth, R.H.. 1905. Twenty-Fourth Report of the Barrow Committee. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 37. 87-95. P.94, Plate 4.
  • <5> Monograph: Grinsell, L.V.. 1970. The Archaeology of Exmoor: Bideford Bay to Bridgwater. David and Charles Limited. P.190.
  • <6> Unpublished document: Fletcher, M.J.. Field Investigators Comments. Ordnance Survey visit, F1, 19 September 1974.
  • <7> Index: Ordnance Survey. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Record Card. SS74SW10. Site visit 8 January 1948.
  • <8> Monograph: Donn, B.. 1965. A Map of the County of Devon 1765 (Reprint). Devon and Cornwall Record Society.
  • <9> Unpublished document: Various. Scheduled Monument Notification . Department of the Environment 1987 County List: Devon 17 County No.204.
  • <10> Unpublished document: Sainsbury, I.S.S. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 23 November 1989.
  • <11> Unpublished document: Sainsbury, I.S.S. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 9 March 1995.
  • <12> Unpublished document: Weston, S.. 1983. Field Monument Warden Visit. Photograph from site visit.
  • <13> Report: Quinnell, N.V. and Dunn, C.J.. 1992. Lithic monuments within the Exmoor National Park: A new survey for management purposes by the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England.. Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. P.18, Location plan.
  • <14> Article in serial: Fowler, M.J.F.. 1993. Standing Stones of Exmoor. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 125. P.163.
  • <15> Report: Wilson-North, R. + Cowley, J.. 2004. Exmoor National Park Monument Management Scheme 2003-4.
  • <16> Report: Bray, L.S.. 2009. Final Results Table: Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment.
  • <17> Artwork: Davey, L.. 2013. Challacombe Common, Exmoor: Painting of the Long Stone. Watercolour.
  • <18> Report: Gent, T. and Manning, P.. 2015. Exmoor National Park Scheduled Monument Condition Survey 2015. Archaedia.
  • <19> Report: Fuller, J.. 2018. Exmoor Prehistoric Standing Stone Condition Survey: 2017-2018 - Scheduled Standing Stones. MDE1280.
  • <20>XY Report: Fuller, J.. 2018. Exmoor Prehistoric Standing Stone Condition Survey: 2017-2018. MDE1280. [Mapped feature: #45328 The Challacombe Longstone/Chapman Longstone, MDE1280]
  • <21> Photograph: Hesketh-Roberts, M.. 1999. Long Stone. Colour. Negative.
  • <22> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 35352, Extant 11 January 2022.

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 648
  • Devon SMR: SS74SW/14
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE20013
  • Local List Status (Rejected)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 74 SW10
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NBR Index Number: 2K/00003
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 35352
  • Scheduled Monument (County Number): 204



Grid reference SS 7051 4307 (point)
Map sheet SS74SW

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (4)

Record last edited

Sep 8 2022 11:59AM


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