MDE1302 - Furzehill Common II: Prehistoric stone setting on Furzehill Common (Monument)


A prehistoric stone row or remains of a stone setting on Furzehill Common consists of three stones, one upright but leaning, one fallen and one stump.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

(SS 7373 4424) Stones (NAT) [1] Furzehill Common. Long 3 degs. 48' 24 1/2": Lat 51 degs. 10' 59". The setting consists of one standing stone, a fallen stone to the west of this and an intermediate third stone indicated by triggers. [2] The standing stone is 0.6 metres high, the half buried fallen stone is 0.5 metres by 0.3 metres and the site of the third stone is just identifiable. Classified as Bronze Age by Grinsell [5]. Published survey 1:2500 revised. [3] SS 7373 4424 Stones (NR). [4] 3 stones; upright, one stump and one fallen, arranged in a northeast to southwest line 14.5 metres long. This is probably the incomplete remnant of a prehistoric setting or row. The site is under rough grass occupying flattish ground on a ridge crest position at SS 7372 4424 on Furzehill Common. It commands extensive views all round. The stones appear to be of local, sedimentary sandstones of the Hangman Grits series.There are several other prehistoric settings and a row on Furzehill Common (MDE1304, MDE1305, MDE1327, MDE8977), all within 500 metres. Three cairns exist 400 metres to the north-west (MDE1293, MDE1294). This site appears to have remained stable since 1906 [2] although the 1906 plan has turned the site through 180 degrees; the north arrow points south and the remaining standing stone is depicted on the southwest end of the line (it should be on the northeast). Grinsell refers to the site erroneously as a standing stone [5]. [6,7] A further table of information on the stones is held in the archive. [8] SS 7373 4425. A stone row consisting of three stones (A, B and C) as described and planned at 1:100 by Pattison [7]. Stone A is partly concealed fallen stone, rectangular in plan, with only the upper face visible. It is 0.7 metres long and 0.33 metres wide and is in an erosion hollow about 1.5 metres in diameter and 0.15 metres deep. Stone B is an irregular shaped stump, or perhaps only a trigger stone, 0.1 metres high, 0.24 metres wide and 0.14 metres thick. There is a slight erosion hollow, about 1 metres wide and 0.1 metres deep, on the northwest side. Stone C is a rectangular sectioned post, 0.6 metres high, 0.11 metres to 0.23 metres wide and 0.15 metres thick. Although upright it has a slight lean to the northwest. It is firmly set in an erosion hollow 1.6 metres diameter and 0.15 metres deep. At present the three stones make a short row 14.3 metres long oriented northeast to southwest. It may have been part of a longer row or setting but there is no evidence to support this. Surveyed at 1:2500. [9] During field survey in 2001 the north eastern stone was found to have been used as a rubbing stone and was extremely loose. Consolidation was recommended. [10] The Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment of 2009 gave the site a survival score of 0. [11] This site is mentioned in the 2013 report by Hazel Riley, a field survey and synthesis of previous projects in the Hoaroak Valley, funded by the Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership Scheme. [12] The site was surveyed in May 2015 as part of the 2015 Exmoor Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment. It was given a survival score of 0. [13] A setting of 3 stones orientated northeast-southwest are situated to the south of the boundary that separates Furzehill north and south. The setting consists of one substantial upright (Stone C), a stub (Stone B), and a recumbent stone (Stone A), now likely buried/semi-buried within a hollow. Stone A was located by probing in a convincing hollow on the correct alignment, however, full certainty cannot be given to this identification. The site’s condition is “very good,” and it has remained largely unchanged since the last survey in 2015. If the location of the potential Stone A is correct, then it is completely buried. The hollow it is situated in appears to be similar to the one identified in previous surveys. The molinia grass tussocks could completely obscure this hollow and Stone B, making the site difficult to locate and orientate. However, the only active damage comes from livestock, who have rubbed against Stone C. [14-15] The site was visited as part of an academic research project by Dr Sandy Gerrard in 2018. [16] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [17]

Sources/Archives (17)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1962. 6 Inch Map: 1962. 1:10560.
  • <2> Article in serial: Chanter, J.F. and Worth, R.H.. 1906. The Rude Stone Monuments of Exmoor and its Borders. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 38. II, pp 538-552. P. 544-545, figure 1, plate 8.
  • <3> Unpublished document: Fletcher, M.J.. Field Investigators Comments. Ordnance Survey visit, F1, 17 September 1974.
  • <4> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1980. 1:10000 Map, 1980. 1:10000.
  • <5> Monograph: Grinsell, L.V.. 1970. The Archaeology of Exmoor: Bideford Bay to Bridgewater. David and Charles Limited. P. 190.
  • <6> Technical drawing: Pattison, P.. 1988. Furzehill Common II/ink survey . 1:100. General: Permatrace. Pen and Ink.
  • <7> Unpublished document: Pattison, P. Various. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 15 December 1988.
  • <8> 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. SS 74 SW 32.
  • <9> Unpublished document: Sainsbury, I.S.S. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 28 June 1995.
  • <10> Report: Blackmore, O.. 2002. A Condition Survey of Standing Stones on Exmoor National Park Authority Owned Land.
  • <11> Report: Bray, L.S.. 2010. Scheduled Monument Condition Assessment 2009, Exmoor National Park.
  • <12> Report: Riley, H.. 2013. Hoaroak Valley: Historic landscape survey and analysis. 29.
  • <13> Report: Gent, T. and Manning, P.. 2015. Exmoor National Park Scheduled Monument Condition Survey 2015. Archaedia.
  • <14> Report: Fuller, J.. 2018. Exmoor Prehistoric Standing Stone Condition Survey: 2017-2018 - Scheduled Standing Stones. MDE1302.
  • <15>XY Report: Fuller, J.. 2018. Exmoor Prehistoric Standing Stone Condition Survey: 2017-2018. MDE1302. [Mapped features: #45337 Stone A., MDE1302; #45338 Stone B., MDE1302; #45339 Stone C., MDE1302]
  • <16> Website: Gerrard, S.. 2020. The Stone Rows of Great Britain.
  • <17> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 35418, Extant 12 January 2022.

External Links (2)

Other Statuses/References

  • Common Land
  • Devon SMR (Devonshire): SS74SW/110
  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 22876
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE20951
  • Local List Status (No)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 74 SW32
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 35418



Grid reference Centred SS 7373 4425 (33m by 27m) (3 map features)
Map sheet SS74SW

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (7)

Record last edited

Jan 12 2022 8:42AM


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