MMO2931 - Post-medieval peat cutting on Burcombe (Monument)

Summary

A large area of peat cutting on Burcombe. It is not clear whether the peat was extracted for domestic fuel, or for turfing enclosure walls. The cuttings were most likely abandoned in the late 19th or 20th Century.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

A large area of peat cutting, of probable post-medieval date, is visible on aerial photographs as numerous small pits and irregular earthworks covering an area of approximately 14 hectares on Burcombe, Exmoor. The earthworks are centred on SS 7553 3798 and are of a variety of shapes and sizes, from square pits measuring 8 metres across, to less regularly shaped, curved pits up to 63 metres across. Due to the vast number of pits visible on aerial photographs, only a representative sample has been transcribed, indicating distribution and form. Peat cutting is known to have continued on Exmoor until very recently, and may continue in places. Similar areas are visible to the east on Deer Park and Little Halscombe. [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]

Sources/Archives (4)

  • <1> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR OS/73087 618-19 (17 April 1973).
  • <2> Monograph: Burton, R.A.. 1989. The Heritage of Exmoor. Roger A. Burton. 232-3.
  • <3> Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 73 NE. MD002190.
  • <4> Report: Riley, H.. 2014. Turf Cutting on Exmoor: An archaeological and historical study - project report.

Map

Location

Grid reference Centred SS 7552 3803 (507m by 479m) (Aerial Survey)
Map sheet SS73NE
Civil Parish EXMOOR, WEST SOMERSET, SOMERSET

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (0)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 73 NE134
  • Pastscape HOBID (was Monarch UID): 1487431

Record last edited

Mar 13 2017 3:35PM

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