MMO3038 - Post-medieval water meadow north of Newhouse (Monument)
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Type and Period (1)
- None recorded
A water meadow of probable post-medieval date is visible on aerial photographs of the 1950s, to the north of Newhouse, Withypool, at circa SS 8447 3525. Three roughly parallel water channels, known as gutters, can be seen descending the combe slopes. Visible for over 60 metres long, the gutters are between 17 and 30 metres apart. The gutters form a type known as a catchwork, ditch gutter or field gutter system, which are typically found on combe or hill slopes. They are designed to irrigate pasture by diverting water from a spring or stream along the slope via the roughly parallel channels or gutters. When irrigation was required the gutters were blocked, causing water to overflow from gutter to gutter, thereby irrigating the slopes. This film of water prevented the ground freezing during the winter and raised the temperature of the grass in the spring, thereby encouraging early growth, particularly important during the hungry gap of the March and April. The gutters were probably supplied with water by a spring located in a shallow combe approximately 75 metres to the southeast. [1-3] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. 
- <1> SMO4068 Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR RAF 540/890 (F2) 3016-7 (3 October 1952).
- <2> SEM7396 Monograph: Cook, H. + Williamson, T.. 2007. Water Meadows: History, Ecology and Conservation. Windgather Press. 1st Edition. 1-7, 28-9.
- <3>XY SMO7574 Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 83 NW. MD002191. [Mapped feature: #32732 ]
- <4> SEM7987 Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1488508, 23 August 2021.
|Grid reference||Centred SS 8450 3523 (107m by 131m) Aerial Survey|
|Civil Parish||WITHYPOOL AND HAWKRIDGE, WEST SOMERSET, SOMERSET|
Related Monuments/Buildings (0)
Related Events/Activities (1)
External Links (1)
- http://www.pastscape.org.uk/hob.aspx?hob_id=1488508 (Pastscape entry: 1488508)
- National Monuments Record reference: SS 83 NW137
- NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1488508
Record last edited
Oct 12 2021 11:00AM
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