MDE8285 - World War Two impact craters west of the Great Hangman Summit Cairn (Monument)


A series of seven small trial pits, originally described as 19th Century mineral prospecting remains for iron or manganese. However, due to their regular size and linear placement, they are now thought to be World War Two impact craters.

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Type and Period (3)

Protected Status

Full Description

SS 5998 4806. A line of seven trial pits 100 metres west of the summit cairn on Great Hangman.They vary from 3 metres to 3.5 metres in diameter and from 0.9 metres to 1.4 metres in depth. Each has a small spoil heap, about 0.6 metres high and 3 metres in diameter around the northern downhill side. They are probably associated with 19th Century mineral explorations, possibly for Iron or Manganese, similar to those at Girt Down (MDE8274) about 1 kilometre to the west. [1] A line of small craters are visible on aerial photographs to the west of Great Hangman Cairn. Centred at SS 5988 4806, at least seven craters are visible along the cliff edge, each measuring approximately 2.5 metres in diameter. The craters are aligned in a linear pattern, running northeast to southwest and are most likely to be impact craters, probably relating to Second World War military activity in this area (see MDE8963), particularly at Holdstone Down, 2 kilometres to the east, where a number of mortar positions are known to have been situated. Similar craters can be seen at SS 6018 4769 (see MMO1752). [2,3]

Sources/Archives (3)

  • <1> Unpublished document: Sainsbury, I.S.S. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 30 April 1993.
  • <2> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. RAF 106G/UK/1655 3178-79 (11 July 1946).
  • <3> Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 54 NE. MD002165.



Grid reference Centred SS 5998 4806 (45m by 43m)
Map sheet SS54NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (2)

External Links (3)

Other Statuses/References

  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 50078
  • Devon SMR: SS54NE/129
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE21474
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO1756
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 54 NE108
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 54 NE41
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • National Trust HER Record: MNA107981
  • Pastscape HOBID (was Monarch UID): 1461450
  • Pastscape HOBID (was Monarch UID): 616402

Record last edited

Aug 17 2020 12:06PM


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