MMO1215 - Extensive medieval field system in Challacombe parish (Monument)


The remains of systems of medieval strip fields extend around the villages of Challacombe and Barton Town, North and South Swincombe and the farms at Withecombe and Whitefield Barton.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

An extensive system of medieval and/or post-medieval lynchets, possibly the remains of an open field system or some system of land improvement, are visible as earthworks and cropmarks and have been mapped form aerial photographs. The field systems extend around the villages of Challacombe and Barton Town, North and South Swincombe and the farms at Withecombe and Whitefield Barton. See MDE10871 and MMO312 for field observations on the lynchets surviving around North and South Swincombe and Barton Town. The lynchets extend over an area measuring 2.3 kilometres by 2.5 kilometres and are bound by the following grid references: SS 6711 4240, SS 6781 4027, SS 6979 3991, SS 7004 4100 and SS 6930 4226. They are centred at SS 6867 4135. It is unclear what, if any, the relationship between the lynchets and the present settlement pattern is. A similar system has been recorded near Parracombe village and this is described in MDE10861. [1-3] The fields are defined by curving parallel lynchets and are visible as earthworks on aerial photographs but some may have been levelled. The relict fields were probably part of an infield-outfield system where the outfield was usually an area of poorer grassland or moorland, and the infield was an area of intensly cultivated strip fields. The strip lynchets form part of an extensive system of lynchets around the settlements and farms in Challacombe parish (for details see MDE10871, MMO312, MMO3785, MMO3786, MMO3787, MMO3788, MMO3789, and MMO3790). [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> Unpublished document: Winton, H.. 1999. RCHME/EH Aerial Photographers Comment. RCHME: Challacombe, West Exmoor, 20 Dcember 1999/.
  • <2> Aerial photograph transcription: Winton, H.. 1999. Challacombe Project/Ink AP Transcription.
  • <3> Archive: Winton, H.. 1999. RCHME: Challacombe Project, Devon. AF1301145.
  • <4> Monograph: Riley, H. and Wilson-North, R.. 2001. The Field Archaeology of Exmoor. English Heritage.
  • <5>XY Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1301286, Extant 19 October 2021. [Mapped feature: #47631 ]



Grid reference Centred SS 6862 4106 (3022m by 2904m)
Map sheet SS64SE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (10)

Related Events/Activities (2)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 64 SE67
  • NBR Index Number: AF1301145
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1301286

Record last edited

Nov 22 2021 9:44AM


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