MMO2519 - 19th Century peat cutting on Madacombe (Monument)


A possible area of peat cutting of probable 19th Century date can be seen as an irregularly shaped rectilinear pit. This is one of four discrete but possibly associated areas of extraction visible as earthworks on aerial photographs.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

A possible area of peat cutting of probable 19th Century date can be seen an irregularly shaped large pit centred on circa SS 8263 4296. The pit is approximately 9 metres wide and 73 long, orientated roughly east-north-east to west-south-west. It is probably contemporary with much more extensive areas of cutting to the north and south, but shares more characteristics with the cuttings to the north, in that it may represent sustained and cumulative peat extraction. In total, this area of peat cutting covers around 3 hectares of common land. The heyday of peat cutting on Exmoor was in the first half of the 19th Century, although cutting probably took place on a smaller scale from the medieval period well into the 20th Century. [1-3] A study of the archaeology and history of peat exploitation on Exmoor’s moorlands provides additional background on the practice and sites. [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> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR RAF 540/931 (F20) 4103-5 (8 November 1952).
  • <2> Monograph: Burton, R.A.. 1989. The Heritage of Exmoor. Roger A. Burton. 72, 232-3.
  • <3>XY Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 84 SW. MD002184. [Mapped feature: #38881 ]
  • <4> Report: Riley, H.. 2014. Turf Cutting on Exmoor: An archaeological and historical study - project report.
  • <5> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1478164, Extant 19 July 2021.



Grid reference Centred SS 8263 4296 (77m by 55m) Aerial Survey
Map sheet SS84SW

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (3)

Related Events/Activities (1)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 84 SW268
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1478164

Record last edited

Jul 19 2021 2:59PM


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