MMO1796 - Post-medieval water meadow east of West Bodley (Monument)

Summary

A post-medieval water meadow system, known locally as a catchwater meadow, is visible on aerial photographs as a series of earthworks.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

A post-medieval water meadow system, known locally as a catchwater meadow, is visible on aerial photographs as a series of earthworks to the immediate west of West Bodley, Parracombe. Located on a gentle southwest facing slope, three ditches known as gutters are visible stretching across a single field of about 0.5 hectares centred at SS 6667 4522. The gutters measure between 60 and 120 metres long. Catchwater meadow systems used a series of approximately parallel gutters to distribute running water evenly over the surface of the meadow, in order to encourage early growth in spring and prevent the ground freezing in winter. This system may have been connected to a farmyard at West Bodley or one of the other farms nearby, and may also have distributed liquid manure over the fields as fertiliser. Most catchwater meadow systems are believed to date to the post-medieval period, although it is possible that they were first developed in the medieval period. [1-3]

Sources/Archives (3)

  • <1> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. MAL 76046 142 (25 June 1976).
  • <2> Monograph: Cook, H. + Williamson, T.. 2007. Water Meadows: History, Ecology and Conservation. Windgather Press. 1st Edition. 1-7, 28-9.
  • <3>XY Archive: Exmoor National Park National Mapping Programme: SS 64 NE. MD002172. [Mapped feature: #35215 ]

Map

Location

Grid reference Centred SS 6667 4522 (74m by 135m) (Aerial Survey)
Map sheet SS64NE
Civil Parish PARRACOMBE, NORTH DEVON, DEVON

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (0)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 64 NE84
  • Pastscape HOBID (was Monarch UID): 1462716

Record last edited

Sep 30 2020 2:56PM

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