MMO2263 - Medieval to modern peat cuttings south of Lang Combe Head (Monument)
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Type and Period (1)
An extensive area of peat cutting of possible medieval to 20th Century date, can be seen as numerous irregularly shaped pits and disturbed ground on aerial photographs [1,2] of the 1940s onwards, centred on circa SS 8695 4161. The pits vary in shape and size, from small rectilinear pits less than 5 metres across to large amorphous excavations over 70 metres in length. The larger pits more readily reflect the cumulative nature of peat cutting on Exmoor, where one family may cut the same peat beds or turbary, known locally as a 'turf', for generations as part of their commoners rights. In total, this area of peat cutting covers over 40 hectares of common land, extending northeast from Dunkery Hill to Wilmersham Common, crossing the parish boundaries between Luccombe, Exford and Cutcombe. Similar, though less extensive cuttings can be seen to the west and east. Due to the difficult nature of the evidence, the transcription attempts only to convey the area and character of the excavations, and should be taken only as indicative of the extent of individual cuttings. The heyday of peat cutting on Exmoor was probably in the first half of the 19th century, although small scale cutting probably continued well into the 20th Century .  A study of the archaeology and history of peat exploitation on Exmoor’s moorlands provides additional background on the practice and sites. 
- <1> SEM6707 Aerial photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946 -1948. Vertical Aerial Photography. RAF CPE/UK/1980 (F20) 4273-5 (11 April 1947).
- <2> SMO4068 Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR OS/73109 950-953 (29 April 1973).
- <3> SEM7230 Monograph: Burton, R.A.. 1989. The Heritage of Exmoor. Roger A. Burton. P. 72, 232-233..
- <4>XY SMO7568 Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 84 SE. MD002185. [Mapped feature: #38879 ]
- <5> SEM8135 Report: Riley, H.. 2014. Turf Cutting on Exmoor: An archaeological and historical study - project report.
|Grid reference||Centred SS 8690 4154 (1189m by 693m) (Aerial Survey)|
|Civil Parish||CUTCOMBE, WEST SOMERSET, SOMERSET|
|Civil Parish||EXFORD, WEST SOMERSET, SOMERSET|
|Civil Parish||LUCCOMBE, WEST SOMERSET, SOMERSET|
Related Monuments/Buildings (0)
Related Events/Activities (0)
External Links (1)
- http://www.pastscape.org.uk/hob.aspx?hob_id=1473202 (Original Monarch entry: 1473202)
- National Monuments Record reference: SS 84 SE 141
- Pastscape HOBID (was Monarch UID): 1473202
Record last edited
Mar 9 2020 1:18PM
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