MMO2054 - Medieval field system southwest of Parracombe Common (Monument)


A probable medieval field system is visible on aerial photographs as a series of earthworks. It is close to a prehistoric enclosure but the presence of lynchets nearby suggest that the field system is medieval in origin.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A probable medieval field system is visible on aerial photographs as a series of earthworks in a field to the southwest of Parracombe Common. Centred at approximately SS 6877 4438, 4 narrow banks are visible aligned approximately southwest to northeast and forming at least four narrow enclosures. The longest of the banks, at SS 6877 4438 measures approximately 240 metres long and runs northwest to southeast. It appears to connect with extant boundaries at the northern end. The three other banks each lie at a 90 degree angle to this bank, at SS 6873 4443, SS 6884 4439 and SS 6889 4437. They run southwest to northeast and measure between 45 and 120 metres in length. All the banks are approximately 1 metre wide. This field system lies on a similar alignment to other extant boundaries in the area, but is markedly different to the post medieval and 19th century enclosure boundaries visible to the west. The proximity of the field system to a prehistoric enclosure (see MDE10889) has led to suggestion that the field system may be prehistoric; however the presence of lynchets nearby suggests that the field system is medieval in origin. Most of the boundaries are not depicted on the 1st Edition Ordnance Survey map, although there is a linear boundary shown in the same area. The area is shown as open moorland on the older map and it seems likely that these banks represent a medieval attempt at enclosure. [1-3] This record was enhanced as part of the pilot project for the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer. [4,5]

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <1> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. RAF 540/931 3047-48 (8 November 1952).
  • <2> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500. 1889.
  • <3>XY Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 64 SE. MD002181. [Mapped feature: #43138 ]
  • <4> Archive: Historic England. 2016. NRHE to HER prototype website test. 1467292.
  • <5> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1467292, Extant 25 July 2016.



Grid reference Centred SS 6877 4437 (247m by 206m) (Aerial Survey)
Map sheet SS64SE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (1)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 2087
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 64 SE110
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1467292

Record last edited

May 5 2021 3:39PM


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