MMO312 - Medieval field system around Barton Town (Monument)


A system of medieval strip fields defined by curving parallel lynchets are visible as earthworks on aerial photographs. These relict fields were possibly part of an infield-outfield system.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

Centred at SS 6800 4008. An area of strip cultivation or lynchetting covering at least 8 hectares is visible on aerial photographs. [1] Cursory examination revealed that the majority of the area had been improved, flattening all surface features. However, in places some slight traces of the former lynchetting survives. [2] The features described above are a system of medieval strip fields extends around Barton Town. The fields are defined by curving parallel lynchets and are visible as earthworks on aerial photographs. These relict fields were possibly part of an infield-outfield system where the outfield was usually an area of poorer grassland or moorland, and the infield was an area of intensly cultivated strip fields. The main concentration of surviving lychets extends over an area measuring up to 1150 metres east to west and 800 metres north to south. More fragmentary remains are visible as far east as the River Bray, to the south of Barton Gate. The fields around Barton Town are part of an extensive system of strip fields around the settlements and farms in Challacombe parish (see MMO1215). The field system is centred at SS 6794 4073 and the main concentration extends across an area within the following grid references: SS 6745 4102, SS 6833 4110, 6857 4043, 6781 4028. There are more lynchets to the east centred at SS 6855 4092 and SS 6881 4089. [3-6] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [7]

Sources/Archives (7)

  • <1> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR RAF CPE/UK/2082 3101 (19 May 1947).
  • <2> Unpublished document: Wilson-North, R.. Various. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 1 October 1993.
  • <3> Unpublished document: Winton, H.. 1999. RCHME/EH Aerial Photographers Comment. RCHME: Challacombe, West Exmoor, 20 December 1999.
  • <4> Monograph: Riley, H. and Wilson-North, R.. 2001. The Field Archaeology of Exmoor. English Heritage. p 98-99; Fig. 4.13.
  • <5> Aerial photograph transcription: Winton, H.. 1999. Challacombe Project/Ink AP Transcription.
  • <6>XY Archive: Winton, H.. 1999. RCHME: Challacombe Project, Devon. AF1301145. [Mapped features: #41440 ; #43467 ; #43470 ; #45887 ]
  • <7> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 910084, Extant 1 November 2021.



Grid reference Centred SS 6811 4069 (1505m by 838m) (4 map features)
Map sheet SS64SE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (2)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE10892
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 64 SE58
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 910084

Record last edited

Nov 1 2021 9:39PM


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